I know what the caged birds feel, alas!
when the sun is bright in the sky;
When the wind stirs soft through the grass;
and the river flows like a stream of glass;
I know what the caged bird feels.
I know why the caged bird beats her wings;
till her blood is red on the cruel bars;
For she must fly back to her nestle;
and a pain still throbs in the old scars;
I know why she beats her wings.