When Nikki Giovanni visited our Chicago offices last July, the icon was full of an array of stories. As we followed her around our space, the legendary poet shared tales of her counterparts, whom she loved like family.

One short story that stuck out to us is the one she shared of her friend Maya Angelou. Easily one of the greatest writers to ever grace the planet, when Maya was honored with own stamp, she selected her own picture.

This year, the African Americans On The Move Book Club will pay homage to Ms. Giovanni by awarding her with their Maya Angelou Lifetime Achievement Award.

“I was friends with Maya Angelou. We would have lunch together when we were teaching at colleges near each other. Most people don’t know that Maya was a very good cook,” Giovanni reflected. “We would tease each other by saying things like, ‘I’ll teach you how to really make chicken.’ It’s an honor to get an award named after such a good friend and a talented woman. I am very happy that the AAMBC awards has chosen {to honor} me.”

The annual AAMBC Literary Awards was launched in 2009 in San Antonio, Texas, by founder Tamika Newhouse and will take place this year June 9-11 in Atlanta. For ticket information, aambcawards.com.

Below, check out Nikki Giovanni reading “Quilts.” It may just bring you to tears.