An angel, a poet, a smasher of illusions, a force of nature. That was Maya Angelou
Only twice in American history has a president invited a poet to signalize his inauguration. I have seen and heard both of these poets. Each time I was thrilled to be watching such an occasion on television, live.
Robert Frost looked so frail, as though the wind could blow him away. That was the inauguration of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
Maya Angelou? Her performer’s presence, in my memory, was like a pillar of light — part sage, part muse to a great politician, partly an angel of power with terrible depths of compassion for human pain. That was the inauguration of President William Jefferson Clinton.