There is always something to do. There are hungry people to feed, naked people to clothe, sick people to comfort and make well. And while I don't expect you to save the world I do think it's not asking too much for you to love those with whom you sleep, share the happiness of those whom you call friend, engage those among you who are visionary and remove from your life those who offer you depression, despair and disrespect.
I’ve not learned the acceptable way of saying you fascinate me...I’ve not even learned how to say I like you without frightening people away.
If I can't do what I want to do, then my job is to not do what I want to do. It's not the same thing, but it's the best thing I can do.
Deal with yourself as a individual, worthy of respect and make everyone else deal with you the same way.
I am proud of the hip hop generation. They are good business people and, actually, good people.
Writers ... I think ... live on that fine line between insanity and genius.
i move on feeling and have learned to distrust those who don't.
There are some things we do simply because the doing is a success.
Style has a profound meaning to Black Americans. If we can’t drive, we will invent walks and the world will envy the dexterity of our feet. If we can’t have ham, we will boil chitterlings; if we are given rotten peaches, we will make cobblers; if given scraps, we will make quilts; take away our drums, and we will clap our hands. We prove the human spirit will prevail. We will take what we have to make what we need. We need confidence in our knowledge of who we are.
She knows who she is, because she knows who she isn't.
Poetry is the most mistaught subject in any school because we teach poetry by form and not by content.
Poetry is like air. It’s one of the necessary things. Everyone benefits from poetry. And as you know, poetry is international. There are only two things that are truly international, poetry and wine
My main strength as a young writer was that I had no fear of making mistakes. I knew I would and I knew I could and would learn from them.
Just as nature abhors a vacuum, humans resist change. Change will occur; vacuums will be filled.
Everyone understands that love comes in many different packages and is used in many different ways. You cannot love beyond your years, nor can you fail to love beneath them. In other words, I think you get the love you need when you open your heart.
A lot of people resist transition and therefore never allow themselves to enjoy who they are. Embrace the change, no matter what it is; once you do, you can learn about the new world you're in and take advantage of it.
Mistakes are a fact of life. It is the response to the error that counts.
You do what you can with what you have. You have to work the edges whatever they are. The main thing is keeping your integrity.
We are strong enough to stand tall tearlessly, we are brave enough to bend to cry, and we are sad enough to know that we must laugh again.
The unwillingness to try is worse than any failure.
Once you know who you are, you don't have to worry anymore.
Now, everything I do, I do because I want to. And I believe the best is yet to come.
We have a world to conquer...one person at a time...starting with ourselves.
Show me someone not full of herself and I'll show you a hungry person.
Nothing is easy to the unwilling.
A lot of people refuse to do things because they don't want to go naked, don't want to go without guarantee. But that's what's got to happen. You go naked until you die.
I am a huge fan of the Black woman. I never hesitate to recommend her when times are bad or things go wrong.
You must be unintimidated by your own thoughts because if you write with someone looking over you shoulder, you'll never write.
The world is not a pleasant place to be without someone to hold and be held by.
We obviously need the truth. We're living in a country of lies.
We love because it's the only true adventure.
I am so hip even my errors are correct.
I want to be clear about this. If you wrote from experience, you'd get maybe one book, maybe three poems. Writers write from empathy.
Don't want to be near you for the thoughts we share but the words we never have to speak.
We are better than we think and not yet what we want to be.
The poet can only write the poems; it takes the reader to complete the meaning.
History is wonderful. We have so much we can learn if we would quit making ideology out of history, and just deal with what happened.
Daddy says the world is a drum tight and hard and I told him I'm gonna beat out my own rhythm.
I'm glad I understand that while language is a gift, listening is a responsibility.
If I can’t have what I want . . . then my job is to want what I’ve got and be satisfied that at least there is something more to want.
Mistakes are a fact of life. If you are willing to be wrong then you have earned the right to be right.
The ability to take pride in your own work is one of the hallmarks of sanity.
Some say we are responsible for those we love. Others know we are responsible for those who love us.
The only advice [for new writers and poets] I can offer is to be yourself: not the self-someone else wants you to be, but the self you are. Enjoy yourself and your life. But most of all travel and eat. That’s how we learn.
I would put books on par with chocolate, because a good book is delicious.
No one needs to teach you to be mean; we need to be taught to be kind.
We write because we believe the human spirit cannot be tamed and should not be trained.
There is no such thing as writer's block. There is only not enough information. If you can't write, learn something.
Libraries...house our dreams.
If i can't have what i want . . . then my job is to want what i've got and be satisfied that at least there is something more to want.
Everything will change. The only question is growing up or decaying.
The only way you can grow is to let yourself make mistakes and create contradictions. As we learn new things, some of our old attitudes will change.
I hope I die warmed by the life that I tried to live.
Follow your image as far as you can no matter how useless you think it is. Push yourself.
If you are sitting there waiting for someone to tell you how wonderful you are, you’ll never get anything done. Women need to get over being women. I’m tired of that socialization of women; that we are always supposed to be sitting around pleasing somebody.
We need to make sure our children travel to see things. Not necessarily long distances but at least out of the neighborhood. On a train. A boat. An airplane.
If you were a pure bolt of fire-cutting the skies I’d touch you-risking my life-not because I’m brave or strong, but because I’m fascinated by what the outcome would be.
Before you jump off a bridge or hang yourself or be unhappy please consider: live for yourself; those who hate you have no purchase.
I love you because no two snowflakes are alike, and it is possible, if you stand tippy-toe, to walk between the raindrops.
Everybody owns themselves. It’s all we’ve got. We have every right to be us. We have every right to satisfy our own needs with the life that we were given. I have no idea, no concept, of why people could ever thing that they could own other people.
There're two people in the world that are not likeable: a master and a slave.
I am honest; I try to be truthful. I like people and wish us well. We are not always deserving of our own best wishes.
If I could come back as anything – I’d be a bird, first, but definitely the command key is my second choice.
The more you love someone the more he wants from you and the less you have to give since you've already given him your love.
If you don't understand yourself you don't understand anybody else.
Life is a process where people mix and match, fall apart and come back together.
My work is a part of me and I know it. I have no reason to try to pick one part of me out from the rest. I only see my work, or rather I should say I see my work only telling my part of the human experience.
Life is a marvelous, transitory adventure.
Poetry and music are very good friends. Like mommies and daddies and strawberries and cream - they go together.