I came across this video last spring. Learning about her retreat into silence helped me understand my own struggle with words post tbi and underscored the importance of allowing the healing process to happen in its own time. It also underscored the power of art to help communicate feelings that words cannot touch. Her courage gives us all courage.
"Evil was a topic about which Angelou, the victim of childhood rape and virulent racism, had a lot to say. Rape caused her to retreat into silence for five years, she said, and was “a dire kind of evil, because rape on the body of a young person more often than not introduces cynicism, and there is nothing quite so tragic as a young cynic, because it means the person has gone from knowing nothing to believing nothing. In my case I was saved in that muteness, you see, in the sórdida, I was saved. And I was able to draw from human thought, human disappointments and triumphs, enough to triumph myself.”