Her powerful voice quieted.
Soulfully narrating her 86 years,
She also narrated the lives of everyone.
Beacon for African American women:
Gwen and her daughters and nieces,
Nikki Giovanni, Alice Walker, Opra Winfrey,
Gayle King, Toni Morrison, bell hooks;
For women of color, all women,
For all men, indeed for all people.
She accepted the Presidential
Medal of Freedom in the name of
All immigrants, listed by country
Of origin, encompassing all
People who were violently stolen
Or escaped poverty and oppression.
She included all of us in her
Words and in her loving arms,
Gave voice to every human moment,
Celebrated Clinton's inauguration.
At Seattle's Paramount Theater,
Being in her splendid presence,
Tears streamed throughout
Her speaking, singing, and poeting.
In her radiating regalness, she spoke
Plainly and directly to each of us.
One side of the same coin:
Eloquent and accessible;
Suffering and laughing;
Humble and courageous;
Affectionate and blunt;
Gregarious and solitary.
Maya already abides in Heaven,
Awaiting any and all who make the cut.
We lost our voice today.
Ann Beth Blake
(c) May 28, 2014