My great hope is to laugh as much as I cry; to get my work done and try to love somebody and have the courage to accept the love in return.
I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life's a bitch. You've got to go out and kick ass.
Some critics will write 'Maya Angelou is a natural writer' - which is right after being a natural heart surgeon.
At fifteen life had taught me undeniably that surrender, in its place, was as honorable as resistance, especially if one had no choice.
Nature has no mercy at all. Nature says, I'm going to snow. If you have on a bikini and no snowshoes, that's tough. I am going to snow anyway.
While the rest of the world has been improving technology, Ghana has been improving the quality of man's humanity to man.
There's a world of difference between truth and facts. Facts can obscure the truth.
There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.
Self-pity in its early stages is as snug as a feather mattress. Only when it hardens does it become uncomfortable.
If you find it in your heart to care for somebody else, you will have succeeded.
It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength.
Music was my refuge. I could crawl into the space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.
Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with shades of deeper meaning.
If you have only one smile in you give it to the people you love.
If we lose love and self respect for each other, this is how we finally die.
I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
For Africa to me... is more than a glamorous fact. It is a historical truth. No man can know where he is going unless he knows exactly where he has been and exactly how he arrived at his present place.
Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.
Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with deeper meaning.
Effective action is always unjust.
Children's talent to endure stems from their ignorance of alternatives.
Achievement brings its own anticlimax.
If you have only one smile in you, give it to the people you love. Don't be surly at home, then go out in the street and start grinning 'Good morning' at total strangers.
The fact that the adult American Negro female emerges a formidable character is often met with amazement, distaste and even belligerance. It is seldom accepted as an inevitable outcome of the struggle won by survivors, and deserves respect if not enthusiastic acceptance.
Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at it destination full of hope.