Amanda Gorman, 22, is the youngest woman to speak at a presidential inauguration gala.
Amanda Gorman, 22, is the youngest woman to speak at a presidential inauguration gala. Her poem The Hill We Climb spoke of divisions and a nation trying to heal.
Amanda says that she finished writing the poem during the recent riots in the North American capital. The Hill We Climb, a highlight of President Biden's inauguration ceremony, received high praise on social media from former presidents like Barack Obama, civil rights activists, and celebrities like Oprah Winfrey. In fact, Amanda wore a ring that Oprah gave her for this historic occasion.
In a world where social change is being discussed, her words bring peace and augur a brighter future full of hope and healing.
Much of Amanda's poetry focuses on social change and social justice. Her biggest inspiration? Her mother.
Amanda grew up in Los Angeles and attributes much of her success to her mother, Joan Wicks, a teacher who raised her and her twin sister as a single mother. Her passion for her poetry began in third grade. But public speaking didn't come naturally to Amanda.
It took courage, determination, and guts for the young poet to take the stage. Regarding her speech impediment, Joe Biden also grew up with a debilitating stutter, and for that reason, Amanda felt a connection that they had overcome.
In a world constantly in need of light, especially after the chaos in the White House from Trump supporters protesting against Biden's inauguration, Amanda's poem reflects a nation in need of social change.
Poetry is at the forefront of change; from the Declaration of Independence of the United States to Martin Luther King's I Have a Dream speech, poetry has always been the common thread throughout American and world history.
In the inaugural stage, Amanda brought hope and unity to the nation through her powerful words. Thanks to her, many young people finally saw and heard themselves represented on her opening stage.
In her poem, she speaks of a beast, which could be interpreted as the recklessness and impatience of Donald Trump. It also speaks of a nation that is not broken but incomplete, which may be related to the disadvantage of the United States compared to other countries that are being faster and more innovative in their health system, policies, environmental measures, and technological progress.
Amanda also describes herself as a thin black girl descended from slaves to emphasize the importance of representation and equality, reminding us of the Black Lives Matter movement.
She speaks of a country committed to all races and cultures, erasing American whites' prejudice and describing the United States as a diverse nation.
With her wise words, "We must first put aside our differences," she highlights one of the saddest tendencies in human nature to crumble. She wants to clarify that the real fight is not between Democrats vs. Republicans but between the present and the future.
Despite being tired, the nation can remain tied forever, even when someone has lost all hope and energy from it. Without mentioning the COVID-19 crisis, she highlights that the world's current situation has shown us that we are all equal, and we need to join forces between nations to fight together and win this battle.
Amanda talks about the rise of America, a nation that once seemed invincible. According to her, the hill that we climbed is the way to reconcile, rebuild and recover from the resentment and toxicity that the former president left behind.
With a sincere heart, says Amanda, "there is always light if we are brave enough to see it if we are brave enough to be."