On the morning of May 23, 1934 in Alabama a beautiful black girl was born. Maya's parents were divorced when she was born,
because of their inability to deal with her. Neither her father nor mother wanted to take custody of her, therefore she was
sent to Mississippi, to live with her grandmother. Maya loved her grandmother, because she trained, helped and provided her
with role models.
When Maya was ten years old, she returned to Alabama to visit her mother. Mayas life took a sudden unpleasant turn as
she saw the assassination of her mother. Maya didn't speak a word after her mother assassination, and her father sends her
back to Mississippi. In the eight grade Maya graduated, as the head of her class with the support of her grandmother. In high
school, she received drama and dance lessons, and won an award.
Maya misery struck harder, when her grandmother died, and she was left in the streets with a ticket to Alabama. Maya
was going to Alabama to find her father, but with no idea where he was to be found she end up in a car graveyard with other
destitute children. Maya was found by a young man, who said to know where her father lived. Maya was taken by the young man
to her father, but he only neglected her.
At age sixteen Maya wanted to prove she was an adult and she became pregnant. Maya gave birth to her son Johnny, as
she was determined to be mother and a father. She was first received in a humble home, by two merciful grandparents, but soon
enough she had to find a place of her own. Mayas life at this time was not easy; she found two jobs to support her apartment,
herself and her baby. After a year, she went back to school, and became a teacher with the little money she had been saving.
Maya became a teacher and she was able to buy a little apartment in a quite southern black neighborhood. Maya life from now
on was full of miracles, she became a teacher with a master degree in education.
In 1961, Maya meet freedom fighter Vusumzi Make. She fell in love with his charms and married him in London. Maya joined
him in Egypt with her son a few months later.In Egypt Maya took a job as an associate editor of the Arab Observer, as she
wished to purse a career in politics. The couple separated in 1962 after a year of marriage, because of failure to manage
money and his affairs with other women (Lupton 8). Maya now planned to situate in Liberia, but Johnny almost got killed in
a devastating car accident and she was obliged to locate in Ghana (Lupton 9). Miraculously Johnny recovered and he was able
to attend University of Ghana (Lupton 139).
In Ghana, Maya is faced with a conflict of culture and she decides to return to United States (Lupton 139). When Maya
returns to the United States, she plans to work with Malcolm X, but he had been assassinated (Lupton 10). Devastated by the
news, she tries to put her life back together by working on the stage in local theaters and even conducting a door-to-door
survey in Watts.
Consequently, on a trip to New York, she meets Martin Luther King, Jr., who asks her to become his coordinator in the
North. Maya visits black churches all over America to help support King's Poor People's March, but once again tragedy smacks.
King is assassinated, and Maya is shocked and completely withdraws from the world (Lupton 10). At last, James Baldwin forces
her out of loneliness and insists that she accompany him to a dinner party. In the dinner party is where the idea for writing
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings is born. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings is Maya first work of literature and autobiography.
It is about her life from the time she was living for Arkansas, until she has her son Guy. Maya second book, Gather Together
In My Name, centers on Maya and her brother move away from their grandmother. Maya Angelou is an American artist, writer,
producer, and director, who is and forever will be illuminating the heart and minds of the people.