Treasure Island

Maya Angelou

(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)

Woman Work

I've got the children to tend
The clothes to mend
The floor to mop
The food to shop
Then the chicken to fry
The baby to dry
I got company to feed
The garden to weed
I've got shirts to press
The tots to dress
The can to be cut
I gotta clean up this hut
Then see about the sick
And the cotton to pick.

Shine on me, sunshine
Rain on me, rain
Fall softly, dewdrops
And cool my brow again.

Storm, blow me from here
With your fiercest wind
Let me float across the sky
'Til I can rest again.

Fall gently, snowflakes
Cover me with white
Cold icy kisses and
Let me rest tonight.

Sun, rain, curving sky
Mountain, oceans, leaf and stone
Star shine, moon glow
You're all that I can call my own.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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Comments about this poem (Woman Work by Maya Angelou )

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  • Cynthia Buhain-baello (8/4/2014 7:32:00 AM)

    Amazing write on the many and almost endless chores of a woman at home. Perfectly worded and rhymed with remarkable rhythm. (Report) Reply

  • Renu Kakkar (9/14/2011 6:49:00 AM)

    this is a beautiful poem...women would naturally identify with it...doing lots of things effortlessly comes naturally to us..if the woman is working then a few more add on jobs are there... (Report) Reply

  • Renu Kakkar (9/14/2011 6:45:00 AM)

    this is a beautiful poem... women would naturally identify themselves with this poem as it is what we do effortlessly...working women have additional responsibilities (Report) Reply

  • Luis Estable (9/7/2011 11:09:00 PM)

    The title of this poem is quite fitting. Yes, the so many things that a woman does and many times they go without notice and the beauty of it is that women do it what it at times seems without effort.

    Men work, too, but they usually attend one job at a time. If they are cooks, that is what they mainly do and so on with different kinds of works. A woman has to be a jack of all trades and often without the glory.

    I thought that this poem was wel-writen. I admire it at many levels. The rhyme scheme which is 1,1; 2,2,3,3 and so one is flawless. The subject matter starts well and finishes well also and the end of the poem severs as a decoration to all the lines that come before it.

    Mayo Angelou has a gift for writing this type of poetry that no critic with a sense of honesty can deny.

    It has been my honor and joy to have gone through this wonderful verse and have given my humble and imperfect opinion.

    Keep on living, Angelou, and the best to you at all time. I have been a poet for some twenty years and still learning from those like you who came before me. You know what they say, 'Learn or try to learn from the best, and you are one of the best amarican poets, male or female of our times and has been for quite some time now.

    The best to you now and ever.

    Luis Estable (Report) Reply

  • Richa Luchmun (5/2/2010 1:50:00 PM)

    this is a very inspiring poem. its tells us about how hard is a woman's life! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! every stanza is very captivating.............. (Report) Reply

  • Mizz. Ghetto Gansta (4/7/2010 3:59:00 PM)

    your a true in spiration to me and others keep on doing wat you do because your amking this world a betta place for me ands my family. ily (Report) Reply

  • A Anne (10/26/2009 4:22:00 AM)

    I was reminded of my mother while reading this poem. Her toil, hard work, sincerity and unadulterated, pure, unconditional love for my brother and I leaves me wondering if I can ever be such a mother and hoping that I would. This poem brought alive the drudgery undergone by women everyday, in such a realistic manner, that I was almost tired just reading it. Oh, how much women need rest from all this, and how important it is for them. (Report) Reply

  • Jasbir Chatterjee (9/20/2009 10:27:00 PM)

    this is a poem that all women, and in particular working women who have to work hard both in office and at home, can identify with; Fantastic poem! (Report) Reply

  • Connie Leigh Lindsay (5/23/2009 9:43:00 PM)

    I have three kids of my own.I am always busy with everyone and everything else that there isn't much time for me.However I can just go outside for a few minutes and feel at peace again.I love her poetry.She seems to be able to say volumes with a few well placed words. (Report) Reply

  • Nzinga Aziz (12/3/2008 10:41:00 AM)

    My daughter says, 'I liked this poem a lot and I wish more people would enjoy it as much as I did. I like the way it sounded and I know that it is true for some people.'

    Thank you to for providing me with this 'pause' in time to share such a precious moment with my daughter. (Report) Reply

  • Koketso Marishane (10/20/2008 4:04:00 AM)

    You've just hit a snail on its head. Very beautiful piece. So profound and inevitable. Thanks for the beautiful read. (Report) Reply

  • Elorm Dogbo (10/24/2007 2:44:00 PM)

    if i will take the style of writing poems, i will no longer be too much that of wilie shakespeare, but your. that was very good. i love it. and i wil tell you that i already have a similar poem. great work maya. (Report) Reply

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