The appeal of love poems by Maya Angelou is the raw honesty of the prose. Angelou resists the urge to write flowery fantasies and chooses to document, in simple, powerful lines, the authentic experiences of the heart. These love poems are written as vulnerable testimonies to the experiences of love and passion.
Love Can Heal
This first poem, "Touched by an Angel", is testimony to how amazingly healing, restorative and exhilarating loving relationships can be. When you read this poem, you can't help but to imagine a person who has been hurt in the past who is opening herself up to a kind and nurturing relationship. Angelou's thoughts are born from the difficult experiences of her life. The healing power of love is celebrated in the following lines:
We are weaned from our timidity
In the flush of love's light
we dare be brave
Another love poem by Maya Angelou, titled "Refusal," is about how precious love can be. The author here is so very moved by love that she cannot bear to imagine that she will not experience this treasured moment again before she dies. The author revels in the physical pleasure and emotional bliss of sexual and romantic love, bringing the reader into the experience through descriptive words. Then she declares that she will have this experience again:
I defy my body's haste.
Without the promise
Of one more sweet encounter
I will not deign to die.
This last poem, "They Went Home," deals with the darker side of love. In this poem, Angelou tells the story of a woman who gives of herself to man after man, only to be scorned again and again. It is a poem about the injustice of love.
Many have speculated that Angelou was thinking of her years as a prostitute and a madam when she wrote this poem; others believe she was simply referring to the many women who have given their bodies, hearts and souls to men who appreciated them only for the moment, but then returned home to other women. This excerpt from "They Went Home" sums up the situation in a few phrases:
They went home and told their wives,
that never once in all their lives,
had they known a girl like me,
But... They went home.
These are only three of Maya Angelou's published poems about love. If the excerpts from these poems have touched you, consider checking out her collections of poetry and other writings.