Life doesn’t frighten me

 “I wrote this poem for all children, who for some reason whistle in the dark and who refuse to admit that they’re frightened out of their wits.”
-Maya Angelou

From the book combining Maya Angelou’s words with Jean Michel Basquiat’s paintings.

Life Doesn’t Frighten Me
Maya Angelou

Basquiat 1Shadows on the wall
Noises down the hall
Life doesn’t frighten me at all

Bad dogs barking loud
Big ghosts in a cloud
Life doesn’t frighten me at all

Mean old Mother Goose
Lions on the loose
They don’t frighten me at all


angelousbasquiat6Dragons breathing flame
On my counterpane
That doesn’t frighten me at all.

basquiat-self-portraitI go boo
Make them shoo
I make fun
Way they run
I won’t cry
So they fly
I just smile
They go wild

Life doesn’t frighten me at all.

angelousbasquiat2Tough guys fight
All alone at night
Life doesn’t frighten me at all.





basquaitPanthers in the park
Strangers in the dark
No, they don’t frighten me at all.


Basquiat 4That new classroom where
Boys all pull my hair
(Kissy little girls
With their hair in curls)
They don’t frighten me at all.


angelousbasquiat4Don’t show me frogs and snakes
And listen for my scream,
If I’m afraid at all
It’s only in my dreams.
I’ve got a magic charm
That I keep up my sleeve
I can walk the ocean floor
And never have to breathe.
angelousbasquiat5Life doesn’t frighten me at all
Not at all
Not at all.
Not at all.










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13 Responses to Life doesn’t frighten me

  1. Loreen Lee says:

    Simply put, (and this can indeed be thought of within various interpretations) that there will possibly always be a depth or implications within anything spoken, that goes beyond our awareness or experience. In order to simplify things, therefore, may I simply state the idea, that we ‘can be influenced or perhaps even controlled, (your choice of words here) by the possibilities within language, even with respect to meaning, and the logic contained within a specific phrase even, that we do not understand, or are not ‘aware’ of. Thus for instance the knowledge involved in Einstein’s theory of relativity holds within it’s language, possibilities that that are ‘beyond my knowledge’ Even within the Christian tradition, this has been understood, as the idea/possibility that we can ‘interpret scripture’ according to the ‘devil’s designs!!! In this latter case, I would, indeed, like to get beyond such references!!! philosophically!!! :). (I can perhaps merely suggest that these interpretations can be too ‘scary’, perhaps). But yes, even modern linguistics recognizes the multiple interpretations that can be given to specific thoughts expressed within words, in the sense that it is ‘language that speaks’. (We know not of what we speak!!! but I don’t want to frighten anyone. no need. For me the flexibility, the lack of ‘univocity’, within language, is rather just an opportunity or challenge to ‘learn more and understand’.
    Forgot to register newest comment thread so will not be responding, if that is an option). The best, Kevin. .


  2. Loreen Lee says:

    Well I followed up further on possible links (from your comment) I post this then, just in case, it is ‘educative’ for someone.

    Of course ‘dualism’ is a concept found within mind-body dualism to the I Ching, etc. etc.. I also found it interesting that this video although was introduced by a presentation of the response of Bush to 9-11 – and ‘the evil axis’ description, we have since learned that there had been an existing intention to invade Iraq. As you say, who do you believe? But ‘I’m not going to “allow’ the devil” to hijack my thoughts (understood as a form of paranoia), am I? Not when various degrees of paranoia could be considered an element ‘essential’ to political ideologies, as well as religious ‘dogmas’ and indeed human thought generally, and not just a phenomena to be found among those given the diagnosis of ‘insanity’. As you once suggested, I believe, we need understand the ‘realities’ even of an individual’s ‘psychosis’. in order to put them into perspective. Once we can ‘clearly’ see the ‘shadows’ that we find within the forest, i.e.when we get to the heights of the hill, and can see what troubles us within a broader perspective, they, hopefully, can be more clearly differentiated, and we can know better who and what to ‘believe’ and more importantly we can conquer our ‘fears…(even of the (non-existent? devil!!!????) and live our lives ‘in peace’. Love your enemies???? My last comment, I ‘promise’!!!!


    • The Devil is nought but a human construct, a story – and he used to be a good guy till he was scape-goated.

      There is a whole universe beyond human belief – and it has no need for good-and-evil.

      I have no need for it either, I find life’s waaay easier without.


  3. Loreen Lee says:

    So I’m reading these links: So thanks. I did feel that making explicit this connection was relevant to the issue of ‘what is it that we are sometimes frightened of’ – the demons, even as the devil is defined as the ‘absence of being’, etc. etc. because I believe that they are ‘real’ elements in what does or can constitute our ‘mental health’, whether they are interpreted as the ‘demons’ within a religious interpretation, or as ‘voices’ real or imagined, within the context of that objectification that is undergone within modern ‘psychiatry’. The point is ‘ we can indeed conquer our ‘own demons’!!!! Real or imaginary.


  4. Loreen Lee says:

    And another video followed again by another ‘Hitchen’ story: -yes he does hitch onto these videos, doesn’t he. So in keeping with Hitchen’s respect for the story of Socrates over that of Jesus, what do I think of the Analytic philosopher’s interpretation and presentation of Heidegger’s version of the saying: : ‘Nothing comes of nothing’. Am I or am I not ‘supposed’ to make ‘something’ out of it? Or according to Hitchen say that indeed sometimes ‘something does come from nothing’ as in the case of the ‘scary’ story that belongs on an October 30th post. Happy Hallo Eve! everyone. Believe what you will. Or think again what Heidegger might have meant when he said: : The Nothing Nothings!!! Boo!!!


    • was listening to a thing the other day the History of God [more properly the story of the hpw the Christo-Judean version of God [most of it went in one and out the other {“History of The Devil” is way more interesting]
      …but this one phrase did stick “in me ‘ead”…

      “God is the “ism of isness” or I dunno, the other way round
      I have no idea what it means but it sounded very Heidergerianish and is pretty sticky.

      like everything else, make of it what you will.


    • Loreen Lee says:

      Our language has the interesting capacity – to assert what it at the same time denies. Like ‘the nothing nothings’. Did Heidegger say this as a joke, and confused even the analytic philosophers?


    • does language say anything or is it all people saying stuff?


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