Maya Angelou's Wisps of Glory

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• Before her many accomplishments as a poet, writer and activist, Maya Angelou sang and danced in her 1950s night club act (of course, the quotes above came later).

• “Calypso music is rooted in resistance, and served as voice of the people. Here's Maya Angelou as Miss Calypso, talking police brutality, more than 50 years ago.” (Reader comment by Denise Sullivan on YouTube.) Listen to audio above.

Maya Angelou congratulated by President Bill Clinton at his 1993 inauguration

• Above: Angelou after reciting her poem, “On the Pulse of the Morning," written for and performed at President Clinton’s 1993 Inauguration.

Maya Angelou congratulated by President Obama upon receipt of the 2010 Medal of Freedom

• Above: Angelou congratulated by President Obama upon receipt of the 2010 Medal of Freedom.

• "In order to survive as a black woman I am obliged to search inside myself for my stuff. Because nobody hands it out for free on the corner." — Maya Angelou, as recounted by Leah Garchik, SF Chronicle, 5.29.14