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Sat Sep 19, 2020, 05:51 PM

When Great Trees Fall - poem by Maya Angelou

When Great Trees Fall

Maya Angelou

When great trees fall,
rocks on distant hills shudder,
lions hunker down
in tall grasses,
and even elephants
lumber after safety.
When great trees fall
in forests,
small things recoil into silence,
their senses
eroded beyond fear.
When great souls die,
the air around us becomes
light, rare, sterile.
We breathe, briefly.
Our eyes, briefly,
see with
a hurtful clarity.
Our memory, suddenly sharpened,
examines,
gnaws on kind words
unsaid,
promised walks
never taken.
Great souls die and
our reality, bound to
them, takes leave of us.
Our souls,
dependent upon their
nurture,
now shrink, wizened.
Our minds, formed
and informed by their
radiance,fall away.
We are not so much maddened
as reduced to the unutterable ignorance of
dark, cold
caves.
And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms,
slowly and always
irregularly. Spaces fill
with a kind of
soothing electric vibration.
Our senses, restored, never
to be the same, whisper to us.
They existed. They existed.
We can be. Be and be
better. For they existed.

6 replies, 397 views

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Reply When Great Trees Fall - poem by Maya Angelou (Original post)
FM123 Sep 19 OP
tblue37 Sep 19 #1
demmiblue Sep 19 #2
KT2000 Sep 19 #3
demmiblue Sep 20 #4
FM123 Sep 20 #5
NNadir Sep 20 #6

Response to FM123 (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 05:54 PM

1. K&R for visibility. Thanks. nt

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Response to FM123 (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 06:01 PM

2. Thank you for the gift of that poem.


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Response to FM123 (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 06:13 PM

3. Perfect -

thank you for posting this.

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Response to FM123 (Original post)

Sun Sep 20, 2020, 02:00 PM

4. Read it again (and again)!

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Response to demmiblue (Reply #4)

Sun Sep 20, 2020, 02:03 PM

5. I am not a religious person, but I find myself reading the poem again and again

like it is some kind of bible passage - I'm still struggling since we lost RBG.

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Response to FM123 (Original post)

Sun Sep 20, 2020, 05:10 PM

6. "They existed./ We can be. Be and be/ better. For they existed."

Great lines.

Thanks much for posting in these dark times.

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