I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

318 Words2 Pages
The poem “I know why the cage bird sings” by Maya Angelou is a powerful and inspirational poem that everyone is can relate to. It reflects the lives of people who have been held back because they are part of a certain group. This poem carries a certain air of resonance relating to sorrow, captivity and racism; however it uses very simple diction and many figurative language devices. For many years, African Americans have endured many injustices, discrimination, and have been treated as though they are inferior. In this poem Maya Angelou establishes a clear difference between a free bird and a caged bird, which symbolizes an African American man or woman and a white man or woman. The free bird is said to be able to “dare to claim the sky” meaning it is able to accomplish any goal unlike the caged bird that cannot because its oppressor (cage) does not allow it to do so. In lines 7-14; “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”, Maya Angelou describes the cries of anguish the African American people felt because they were being deprived of equality. The tunes that were heard were the organized protest, speeches, and civil rights activist fighting for equality but society barely acknowledged these voices which made it seem as though they were being heard on “a distant hill” or in other words, their cries were faintly heard. One of the most captivating part in the poem is “his wings are clipped and his feet are tied so he opens his throat to sing” indicating that while going through so much struggle the African American people still had hope for a better future. Throught the whole poem the free bird was compared to the caged bird, the caged

More about I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Open Document