05/28/2014 02:21 pm ET Updated Jul 28, 2014

Our Sweet Maya

This morning we found out what we all knew was coming, Maya went away from us to rest. She deserves rest; she gave her life to make humanity better. She gave her voice to correct, comfort and challenge us. We are better because she was, because she still is. Maya's voice provoked us to be more conscious, caring and loving and millions gravitated, rested and matured through her power, her very being. She told us mysteries about life, things we never pondered. We never thought about birds, cages and the singing that was still unstinted. She pulled our consciousness toward wholeness by labeling women in the only adjective that has ever mattered; she called women "Phenomenal." She was our sweet Maya and we all belonged to her.

She called us sons and daughters, we were her family. She embraced us, we felt so cared for by that embrace. Her brothers and sisters were Malcom, Martin, Medgar and Jimmy. Her Sisters were Corretta, Betty, Fannie and Shirley. Her daughter was Oprah and being a part of her family made us feel royal, loved and it made us feel significant in ways that will be hard to explain to future generations. She was our sweet Maya and we all belonged to her.

She wrote about the great bending in her life, but never gave brokenness space to take root in her soul. She rose from all her pain and then she gave them away to be a roadmap to our own wellness, to our own safety. Hers was a life that mattered greatly to us and the joy of having had her with us is greater than the pain of losing her, her light will never be dimmed. She was our sweet Maya and we belonged to her.

Children will be born who never shared the same space with her, never sat in a room to be hypnotized by her words and awed by her queenly countenance. It will be our responsibility to keep her alive in our heart and minds. Through our Facebook posts, tweets, dissertations and thesis she must still live and call us into universal accountability, we all must find a way to love each other deeply. Let us all be wounded if we forget her, let our hands forget their cunning and mouths be shut if we forget our Sweet Maya; she was ours and we all belong to her.