Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Video: Serena Williams reads 'Still I Rise' by Maya Angelou (with that poem's words)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcases a video of tennis champion Serena Williams reciting Maya Angelou's poem "Still I Rise".

The content of this post is presented for cultural and inspirational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to Maya Angelou and Serena Williams for their lives' legacies. Thanks also to the producer and publisher of this YouTube video.

(Maya Angelou, 1928 - 2014)

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops,
Weakened by my soulful cries?

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.

Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

From And Still I Rise by Maya Angelou. Copyright © 1978 by Maya Angelou. Reprinted by permission of Random House, Inc.


Click information about Maya Angelou.

Click for information about Serena Williams.

SHOWCASE VIDEO- Serena Williams reads "Still I Rise" by Maya Angelou

Bear in the Woods, Published on Jul 9, 2016
Serena Williams reads 'Still I Rise' by Maya Angelou.

I disabled the comments because a lot of people weren't discussing the actual video but were instead insulting Serena Williams - either because of her skin colour or because of her body - or turning the comment section into a race war. I figured that disabling comments is the most acceptable solution for the many people wanting to enjoy the poem and the video without the comment section being turned into a minefield by the ones watching the video solely for the purpose of insulting Serena Williams.

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  1. Yes, the Beeb broadcast this before she won Wimbledon, her 22nd Grand Slam. She's a great champion and a gracious winner. A real goosebumps moment.

    1. Okay, it took me a moment to figure out the word 'Beeb' = BBC. :o)