Bad first impressions linger, but perhaps it’s time I read I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.
Angelou reciting her poem “On the Pulse of Morning”, at President Bill Clinton’s inauguration, January 1993
It’s shameful how many authors and books that I “should have read” I haven’t yet gotten around to. Especially given that I hold an MA in English and am a published author of poetry, fiction and nonfiction and have freakin’ taught literature at the college level.
The list of canonical texts I haven’t read … well, all I can really do is observe is that there are so damned many books that we all ought to know, and very few folks have read them all, and while I haven’t read many that I should have, I have read a great many books, and probably have read quite a few that should be on that Great Books list but aren’t. Perhaps that’s not a sufficient defense, but it’s all I have.
One of the authors whom I perhaps should have read is Maya Angelou, the writer and activist who spent that last three decades as a professor at my alma mater, Wake Forest. It seems like everyone loved her. I mean, everyone. I have friends who took her classes or worked with her and they rave about her even more than those who only know her as readers. Read more