Maya Angelou

(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)

Caged Bird - Poem by Maya Angelou

The free bird leaps
on the back of the wind
and floats downstream
till the current ends
and dips his wings
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks
down his narrow cage
can seldom see through
his bars of rage
his wings are clipped and
his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings
with fearful trill
of the things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom

The free bird thinks of another breeze
and the trade winds soft through the sighing trees
and the fat worms waiting on a dawn-bright lawn
and he names the sky his own.

But a caged bird stands on the grave of dreams
his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
his wings are clipped and his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.


Comments about Caged Bird by Maya Angelou

  • (1/27/2017 6:44:00 AM)


    A never-ending ode of human freedom (Report) Reply

    2 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • (1/13/2017 9:17:00 AM)


    she is a beautiful woman (Report) Reply

  • Tom Allport (12/30/2016 2:07:00 PM)

    tom allport
    even though he is scared. (Report) Reply

  • (12/11/2016 4:07:00 PM)

    Caged bird
    hauntingly beautiful heart rending poem. (Report) Reply

  • (12/3/2016 3:22:00 AM)


    Beautiful piece. (Report) Reply

  • Bernard F. Asuncion (11/26/2016 12:59:00 AM)


    A freedom of a single dove....

    Wonderful poem....
    (Report) Reply

  • Tajudeen Shah (11/12/2016 11:12:00 PM)

    the caged
    only knows how its being in there... only the brave within could only break those haunting pressures, as blessed Maya has made her way out by the corridors of powerful words and imaginations unbounded. needless to say, a Tsunami of emotions against the appalling bondage of all times, we all must say. (Report) Reply

  • (10/30/2016 9:43:00 AM)


    sad yet very creative piece, i like this poem (Report) Reply

  • Nikki Jo (10/29/2016 9:25:00 AM)


    This poem is so powerfully n beautifully expressed !! Straight from her heart ! One who truly knows d very meaning of FREEDOM ... (Report) Reply

  • Neptune Barman (10/22/2016 10:09:00 PM)


    Amazing imagination within few words.The thinking is great and creativity. (Report) Reply

  • (10/3/2016 3:48:00 AM)

    To break the relativity!
    I've been wondering, recently, about the relativity entwined within our lives and thoughts. Who defines the 'right' and the 'wrong'? I hardly find anything absolute in this context, but rather a relativity encircling!

    I'd say the poet, through most of her poems, talks about this vicious relativity - the one which ought to be thrashed, beyond which there lies bliss and tranquility!

    In love with her words: D
    (Report) Reply

  • Osazee Dankaro (9/26/2016 10:15:00 AM)


    Every time I read this poem, I become sad: because we are all caged birds. (Report) Reply

  • (9/2/2016 9:22:00 PM)


    This has stolen my heart (Report) Reply

  • Mizzy ........ (8/28/2016 8:02:00 AM)


    Wonderful poem with a very deep message behind the well chosen words. (Report) Reply

  • (8/21/2016 12:28:00 PM)


    Wonderful...a reminder to us to be free from all bondages just like a free bird, since we all had our choices.. (Report) Reply

  • (8/21/2016 12:27:00 PM)


    Lovely...this is a reminder to us...to be free from all bondages like a free bird (Report) Reply

  • Loppo Louie (8/13/2016 9:30:00 AM)


    A very great poet... (Report) Reply

  • Menato San (8/8/2016 12:42:00 AM)


    Nice so nice (Report) Reply

  • Ernest Makuakua (7/28/2016 10:50:00 AM)


    ... So true for when caged and tied all you can do is open your mouth and sing the songs of things unknown for freedom it longs for and hope and faith it has... (Report) Reply

  • (7/26/2016 3:17:00 AM)


    They can cage me like a wild animal in a zoo that is not it's habitat. They can strip search me and rob me of my dignity. They can whip me to the bone. They can isolate me in the hole until I go berserk. They can rob me of my life. But in the freedom of my mind: I will always roam like a gypsy. I will always have dignity. I will always be strong to the bone. I will always act a little crazy (not certifiably) . And should I die at their feet, I will rise like Phoenix. And I Shall Triumph! (Report) Reply

    Tajudeen Shah Tajudeen Shah (11/12/2016 11:09:00 PM)

    amazingly contextual! . wow. i enjoyed the structure, content, passion and frame with all honesty. true to the core. keep composing such wonders. God bless. Tajudeen shah

Read all 351 comments »

# 7 poem on top 500 Poems

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Read poems about / on: freedom, sky, sun, wind, dream, tree



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

Poem Edited: Saturday, March 14, 2015


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