Amanda Gorman made history on Wednesday January 20, as the youngest poet in US history to read a poem at a presidential inauguration.
The 22-year-old read a powerful poem at the inauguration of US President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
The Los Angeles native reportedly finished writing the poem, titled “The Hill We Climb,” on the night of January 6, hours after rioters took part in a siege on Capitol Hill.
Gorman opened her poem Wednesday by saying, “We braved the belly of the beast.”
“We’ve learned that quiet isn’t always peace and the norms and notions of what just is, isn’t always justice. And yet the dawn is hours before we knew it, somehow we do it, somehow we’ve weathered and witnessed a nation that isn’t broken but simply unfinished,” she said.
“We, the successors of a country and a time, where a skinny black girl descended from slaves and raised by a single mother can dream of becoming president, only to find herself reciting for one.”
“And yes, we are far from polished, far from pristine, but that doesn’t mean we are striving to form a union that is perfect,” she said. “We are striving to forge our union with purpose, to compose a country committed to all cultures, colors, characters and conditions of man.”
“And so we lift our gazes not to what stands between us but what stands before us. We close the divide because we know to put our future first. We must first put our differences aside,” Gorman said.
Gorman follows in the footsteps of esteemed poets like Maya Angelou and Robert Frost in reading a poem at a presidential inauguration.
She, however, received praises for her poem from the likes of Lin Manuel Miranda, Hillary Clinton, and Oprah Winfrey, who tweeted, “I have never been prouder to see another young woman rise! Brava Brava, @TheAmandaGorman! Maya Angelou is cheering—and so am I.”
— Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) January 20, 2021
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) January 20, 2021