I remember the first time I read this poem. It took me several times to really and truly understand her meaning. I spent years being a nerd who loved sports, but I grew believing that a woman was only wanted if she was beautiful. In high school I was never the girl with a boyfriend to brag about. Went to every homecoming except one alone (although each time I was the only one who had the best fun). Even went to my prom pregnant without a date (even this one I ended up with the most fun….lol). Most of my friends were guys. We played basketball and football together. They taught me Chess, spades, and dominoes. Heard stories about their girlfriend troubles and surprisingly they asked me of all people for advice. No I wasn’t the best on looks. In my opinion I am still not, but one day…long before the poem…I woke up and suddenly had a new found confidence in myself.

I didn’t change my hair. Didn’t change what I wore. Didn’t change the things I enjoyed to do. Just changed my attitude. My way of handling and dealing with those around me. And you know what? It amazed me then just how people changed their attitude towards me. This book nerd was suddenly considered interesting and intriguing. In fact, I met my first love in a way I never would have if I had not changed the attitude within myself. I walked with my head held high and this guy took one look at me and thought I was “gorgeous”.

It took me years of heartache and pain to fully become a phenomenal woman. I overhear and oversee all these young ladies who think that beauty is what will get them what they want. They put down those who are not as cute as they believe they are. Talk about those who don’t have their style of dress or within their class of weight.  Yet they fail to realize that men will treat them the way the act that they want to be treated. Men want from them only from what they see. They do not understand that to get respect you must demand it. Not by the raise of your voice and the words you speak. By the way you hold your head up high and proud.

With a wonderful man by my side, 3 handsome entertaining young men, work, and a strive to have my own I am tired. I tend to get caught up in the busyness of my life. Yet no matter what….I am a woman, Phenomenal woman. Yep, that’s me!

Phenomenal Woman by Maya Angelou

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman

Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
‘Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.