Amanda Gorman became the youngest ever poet to perform at a presidential inauguration on 20th January 2021.
The 22-year-old – who became the USA’s first National Youth Poet Laureate in 2017 – performed her poem The Hill We Climb at President Joe Biden’s inauguration, and stole the show with her remarkable prose and raw, moving performance. Since then, she’s been all anyone can talk about.
In her poem, Gorman spoke of reuniting a fractured and divided America through the power of unity, togetherness and hope:
We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another/
We seek harm to none and harmony for all/
Let the globe, if nothing else, say this is true/
That even as we grieved, we grew/
That even as we hurt, we hoped/
That even as we tired, we tried/
That we’ll forever be tied together, victorious/
Not because we will never again know defeat, but because we will never again sow division.
Unsurprisingly, people have been racing to read more of Gorman’s work. Shortly after her recital, she tweeted: “I AM ON THE FLOOR MY BOOKS ARE #1 & #2 ON AMAZON AFTER 1 DAY! Thank you so much to everyone for supporting me and my words. As Yeats put it: ‘For words alone are certain good: Sing, then.’”
I AM ON THE FLOOR MY BOOKS ARE #1 & #2 ON AMAZON AFTER 1 DAY! Thank you so much to everyone for supporting me and my words. As Yeats put it: "For words alone are certain good: Sing, then"
— Amanda Gorman (@TheAmandaGorman) January 20, 2021
If you, too, have been inspired by Gorman’s powerful words, you can pre-order her first poetry collection, The Hill We Climb on Amazon:
Can’t wait until its release date in September? Here are 6 of our favourite poetry collections that are sure to leave you feeling inspired…