Phenomenal Woman

Maya Angelou

By: LeAndrea White

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Musical Devices

The Rhyme Occurs Regularly.

The first four lines of the poem have an "A,A,B,A" rhyme scheme, but then on the seventh line she changes the rhyme scheme to an "A,B,A,B" rhyme scheme which she continues to use throughout the stanza.


The repetition of the consonant sounds at the beginning of words is called alliteration. Examples of alliteration from the poem are,


The Words Are Casual, Colloquial.


1.“Then they swarm around me

A hive of honey bees.”

In the above line poet compares desiring men to bees flocking after the poet for her unique charm.

2. “It’s the fire in my eyes.”

The poet here uses a very commonplace metaphor of fire that defines poet’s passion.

3.“The sun of my smile.”

Here, Maya Angelou has compared the warmth of her smile to that of the sun.


Two daunting images consolidate the upbeat mood of the poem. First one is men like bees flock after the poet who denounces all the beauty stereotypes and prefers to lead her life on her own way. Second image is men coming onto their knees in their desperate persuasion of a woman who downplays all social conventions and becomes quite an enigma to them.


There Are 60 Lines n This Poem. In Every Other Stanza The Poem Repeats "Cause I’m a woman Phenomenally. Phenomenal woman, That's me. " At The End. The Poem Mostly Is Traditional.

The Poem Goes Back To How It Starts. It Ends How It Started. The Speaker Explains How She's Phenomenal.

There Are 22 Sentences In The Poem. The Sentences Are Simple, Easy To Understand.The Sentences Are Statements Through Out The Whole Poem.


The Poem Is Narrative Because The Speaker Tells Us Stories Of How Men Are Amazed By Her . How She Walks Into A Room And They All Stare And Crowd Around Her. The Poem Also Describes A Lady's Traits On Being Phenomenal.

The Poem Expresses How Confident The Woman Is.

The Poem Is Told Through A Fictional Persona. The Speaker Is A African American Woman. ( Maya Angelou ) The Speaker Is Speaking To The Audience.

The Tone Is Very Sassy, Independent , Confident And Powerful.


In The First Stanza The Speaker Is Telling Us How Pretty, Skinny Women Wonders What's Her Secret For Being So Phenomenal. The Speaker Tells Us When She Tells Them They Think She's Lying.

In The Second Stanza The Speaker Explains How Her Long Arms, Wide Hips, The Way She Walks, And Her Full Lips Is How She's Phenomenal.

In The Third Stanza The Speakers Tells Us How She Walks Into A Room And Every Man Stops And Stares. They All Crowd Around Her.

In The Fourth Stanza The Speaker Says Its The Look In Her Eyes, Her Pretty White Teeth, The Way Her Hips Swing And How She Dances Is How She's Phenomenal.

In The Fifth Stanza The Speaker Tells Us How Men Try To Find Out What Exactly They See In Her. They Try So Hard To Find Out. And Even When She Tries To Show Them They Still Don't Know.

In The Sixth Stanza The Speaker Says Her Body, Smile, And Wide Hips Is What Attracts The Men To Her.

In The Seventh Stanza The Speaker Tells Us That She Holds Her Head Up High Because She Doesn't Have To Talk Loud To Be Noticed. When She Walks By Women Shouldn't Hate, They Should Be Proud.

In The Last Stanza The Speaker Tells Us That She's Phenomenal Because Of The Way She Walks, The Way Her Hair Is Curled At The End, And How Hard It Is To Get Her.

About Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou is a poet and award-winning author known for her acclaimed memoir I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and her numerous poetry and essay collections. Born on April 4, 1928, in St. Louis, Missouri and she died on May 28, 2014.
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