We will miss you Maya Angelou

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I don’t know how much longer I’ll be around. I’ll probably be writing when the Lord says, ‘Maya, Maya Angelou, it’s time.’

It is with a sad heart that I learn today of the passing of Maya Angelou. Here are a few select Maya Angelou quotes:

My task for today…

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.

A lesson for faculty…

My mother said I must always be intolerant of ignorance but understanding of illiteracy. That some people, unable to go to school, were more educated and more intelligent than college professors.

The pursuit of knowledge…

Nothing will work unless you do.

Whatever you want to do, if you want to be great at it, you have to love it and be able to make sacrifices for it.

Will you say and do what needs to be done to protect public education…

Courage is the most important of all the virtues, because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently. You can practice any virtue erratically, but nothing consistently without courage.

All of us knows, not what is expedient, not what is going to make us popular, not what the policy is, or the company policy – but in truth each of us knows what is the right thing to do. And that’s how I am guided.

Diversity…

It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength.

School segregation…

Prejudice is a burden that confuses the past, threatens the future and renders the present inaccessible.

We allow our ignorance to prevail upon us and make us think we can survive alone, alone in patches, alone in groups, alone in races, even alone in genders.

Until blacks and whites see each other as brother and sister, we will not have parity. It’s very clear.

In so many ways, segregation shaped me, and education liberated me.

Schools without libraries and literacy…

Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading, to make reading one of his deep and continuing needs, is good for him.

Elimination of illiteracy is as serious an issue to our history as the abolition of slavery.

Social studies standards…

Hold those things that tell your history and protect them. During slavery, who was able to read or write or keep anything? The ability to have somebody to tell your story to is so important. It says: ‘I was here. I may be sold tomorrow. But you know I was here.

Watch her story about meeting and mentoring Tupac (“six pack”).

and finally..

I work very hard, and I play very hard. I’m grateful for life. And I live it – I believe life loves the liver of it. I live it.

I love a Hebrew National hot dog with an ice-cold Corona – no lime. If the phone rings, I won’t answer until I’m done.

We will see you again soon Maya.

How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!

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Categories: Wisdom

Author:Julian Vasquez Heilig

Julian Vasquez Heilig is currently an Associate Professor of Educational Policy and Planning and African and African Diaspora Studies (by courtesy) at the University of Texas at Austin.

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6 Comments on “We will miss you Maya Angelou”

  1. May 28, 2014 at 9:20 am #

    Reblogged this on teachersindistress and commented:
    Maya Angelou was a great role model for women everywhere. She was the epitome of grace, courage, and wisdom. I am saddened to hear of her passing, but I am confident that her words will live on forever.

  2. May 28, 2014 at 9:25 am #

    Yes, we’ll all miss Maya Angelou and we will be reading her poetry in high school English class today in tribute!

  3. May 28, 2014 at 10:56 am #

    Thank you Julian for this elegant and appropriate remembrance of the great Maya Angelou

  4. May 28, 2014 at 2:45 pm #

    My class read and discussed, “Guilt” from the section called: “Shackles” in Elements of Lit. in the 11th grade text book. And, we read, “On The Pulse of the Morning” the Inaugural Poem. It was read by Maya Angelou, Jan. 20, 1993 for William Jefferson Clinton.

  5. May 31, 2014 at 9:48 pm #

    One of my favorite quotes of Maya Angelou: “If you’re always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be.”

    It reminds me to do great, be great & act great. Never settle for normal.

    R.I.P Maya Angelou..

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Heilig: A Tribute to Maya Angelou | Diane Ravitch's blog - May 28, 2014

    […] Vasquez Heilig here recalls some of the words of Maya Angelou, one of our nation’s greatest writers. She was born in 1928 in St. Louis, […]

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