You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.


  1. Shirley, Tess, Anna, Irene---TUTE,Tianjin0402, Group 3 says:

    The best way to defeat opponents is to do what they think you cannot complete, so believe in yourself, probably sooner or later, you will succeed. It is a world full of possibilities, the greatest possibilities of our country, our dreams and our hopes are just waiting for us to grab onto them. So we must keep on trying to get what we want.

  2. Katie, Coral, Dorothy,Buck -TUTE,TIANJIN,0402,group6 says:

    Firstly,in this poem the poet articulates the Afro- American revolutionary spirit and aspiration for equal and just treatment. Yet with this powerful setences, the poem is very motivating, and afrer reading it, we are filled with passion to struggle for a better life.The poet wrote it in great cofidence and optimism which will render the same to the readers.

  3. lynn ,Jordan, Tiffany ,Jane ,Alexandre, 0402--group 4 says:

    The black suffered from being enslaved, fighting for freedom, human rights and equal rights. What the author wants to do is to arouse this generation to sacrifice themselves for the freedom. She insisted that the blacks were doomed to win the revolution, set a goal on further education and become the pillars of the state and make some contribution to the society, at the same time, to win honour for the American nation, especially the society of the black people. The poet was delighted for the effort the blacks had made and achieved freedom.

  4. Edwin, Lily,Miranda,Sylvia---TUTE,TIANJIN0402Group 1 says:

    This poem is full of energy, spirit, firmness, which calls on all the black people to stand up against their miseroble life, and for their equal rights. The younger gemeration is the future constructor of the society. As the author says “into a daybreak that’s wondrous clear”. She believes all of them may have a bright future and still rise up.

  5. M.Mary Chikkala says:

    Maya Angelou’s poem “Stiil I rise” represents the whole generation of suffering, downtrodden women whose cry rises above “Like the dust” and “Like air”. It not only stirs up the oppressers for their cruelty but also lets them reflect that they have a responsibility for women’s concerns. Angelou cries for equal partnership in life together with men, for what they are meant to be by birth.

  6. Angel Price says:

    When I read this pome it made my day come to life. This pome to me means that no matter what happens I can always rise up and overcome what happened.

  7. Brittney says:

    This poem is very encouraging and when you are down you can always relate to Still I Rise.

  8. mickey 252 says:

    This poemmhas taught me a lesson from day one and still i still love to read this poem:)

  9. Blake says:

    This poem still i rise taught people a lesson.

  10. Jacob says:

    Hey i thought this was a really good peom!

  11. Sarah says:

    The poem is okay but it dosnt make much sense because who is i and you?

  12. matt guilds says:

    it is very inspiring, and it made me change my whole perspective on life.

  13. Roxanne Barrett says:

    i love your poem i still riese i describes my life as a teenager ,when i feel horrible inside i read your poem and it makes me feel happy inside.keep up the good work love roxanne a.k.a. roxy

  14. karmen says:

    Mya Angelou has been such an inspiration to be growing up as an aspiring Writer and Poet….
    I feel that I can do anything and move any mountain by working hard showing my tenacity to overcome all onsticle….
    Mya Angelou had many tragedys and trials to overcome even through her silence, she was able to arise and sing melodies of music through her poetry.

  15. Arianna says:

    this is very emotional very touching thanks for writing that

  16. LiZMARiTTE says:


  17. Danielle says:

    This poem is great…Maya you are a hero and a role model to me..You are like the mother i never had.. Keep up the good work!!

  18. cordeirdre says:

    i like all your poems but this is my favorite one out of all them i also read this at all my ceremonies

  19. dionna says:

    this a very nice poem can you re-lt to it????

  20. Tsion says:

    I am not going to be overly emotional or sound scientific like some of these people that commented but say what i feel about this poem.
    i think it is one of the best poems that i have ever read and i have heard it performed many times at school and places with much emotion and when there is a speaker saying this poem in the right way it truly sounds amazing.

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