“Letter to My Daughter” – Poem by Maya Angelou

This poem has been circulating the web for a while and it is always a good reminder to myself about our strengths as women and how we need/can take care of ourselves. I love Maya Angelou. So, here it is on the blog now… “Letter to My Daughter” by Maya Angelou.

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE … enough money within her control to move out 
and rent a place of her own, 
even if she never wants to or needs to… 

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE …. something perfect to wear if the employer, 
or date of her dreams wants to see her in an hour… 

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .. a youth she’s content to leave behind…. 

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE … a past juicy enough that she’s looking forward to 
retelling it in her old age…. 

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ….. a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra… 

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE …. one friend who always makes her laugh… and one who lets her cry…


A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE …. a good piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in her family…. 

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE …. eight matching plates, wine glasses with stems, 
and a recipe for a meal, 
that will make her guests feel honored… 

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .. a feeling of control over her destiny… 

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… how to fall in love without losing herself.. 

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… how to quit a job, 
break up with a lover, 
and confront a friend without; 
ruining the friendship…. 

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW….. when to try harder… and WHEN TO WALK AWAY…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… that she can’t change the length of her calves, 
the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… that her childhood may not have been perfect….but it’s over… 

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… what she would and wouldn’t do for love or more… 

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…. how to live alone… even if she doesn’t like it… 

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW.. . whom she can trust, 
whom she can’t, 
and why she shouldn’t take it personally… 

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… where to go… 
be it to her best friend’s kitchen table.. 
or a charming  Inn  in the woods… 
when her soul needs soothing… 

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…. What she can and can’t accomplish in a day… 
a month…and a year… 

About Mare Cromwell

Mare Cromwell is the award-winning author of "Messages from Mother.... Earth Mother" and "If I gave you God's phone number....Searching for Spirituality in America." She is currently working on her third book: "The Great Mother Bible." She has studied with Native American teachers for eighteen years and sits on the World Council for Wisdom Gatherings. Mare calls Western Maryland her home. To learn more about her books, go to http://www.pamoonpress.com. (Note: she is a former worm herder. ;~)
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2 Responses to “Letter to My Daughter” – Poem by Maya Angelou

  1. Pingback: “Letter to My Daughter” – Poem by Maya Angelou | Alyscia Cunningham

  2. Alyscia says:

    Beautifully and boldly stated…and I agree! Thanks for sharing Mare!

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