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Greens For Breakfast: Maya Angelou Talks About Women and Wellness
On worthiness: "Because the mighty and the strong don’t hold women in high regard, we feel that we’re not worthy of being held in high regard. So we miss one of the greatest steps a woman can take, which is the chance to be on her own side; to be her own health advocate. You really have to believe you’re worthy. That is the first step."
On fear. "So many of women don’t trust authority. They’re afraid of the mammogram machine. They’re afraid of the Pap smear. But those of us who know must show! Really, it is imperative that we not stop talking. We must not become impatient. And we must not think that we can lecture women into thinking better of themselves and their health. What we do is we love them. A person knows when somebody really cares."
On colds. "I think quite often the mind can heal the body. In fact, if
I’m traveling and in a hotel, and I wake up with a little scratch on my throat,
I get up and begin to shout, “Get out of my body! I don’t need you! Get out!
Get out of my body! Now, now!” Later, I go outside and the maids will
be in the lobby and they look around like, “Who tried to get into that woman’s body?”
It’s funny, of course. But you have to give your body permission to heal itself.
On greens for
breakfast. "My secret is that I eat green every day—collard, mustard greens, beet
tops and maybe spinach. I pick through them at my kitchen table with newspaper
on table, and then I wash them three or four times so there’s no sand.
Afterward, I sauté a little butter and a little olive oil and an onion, some
salt and pepper. I put all of the greens into the pot, with some chicken stock
(or vegetable stock, which is good too) and I steam that slow over heat. When
they’re done, I can eat that anytime I want. Sometimes for a snack or
breakfast. You know, it's only Americans who have been visited with the
idea that people are supposed to eat cereal in the morning.
On what we learn of ourselves from other women: "Every woman and every young girl has got to understand, 'I am a
human being, and nothing human can be alien to me.' She's got read and realize about other
people in the world—Chinese girls, South African girls, Irish girls—and understand she’s just like them. She has another background, yes, but she’s got to see how
wide the range is. She’s got to be able to walk the long walk."
Maya Angelou's poem for Oprah
How to write a poem (now)
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