FOR THOSE OF US who write poetry, its power to move, to inspire, to uplift, to matter, were evident during Wednesday’s Presidential inauguration as National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman delivered her powerful poem, “The Hill We Climb.”
To watch that 22-year-old Los Angeles poet stand before the nation’s capitol, before the new President and Vice President and so many others, and hear her deliver her poem with such passion filled me with hope.
Hope themed her poem. If you missed hearing Gorman’s poem, I’d encourage you to seek it out online and listen. Poetry, when read aloud by its author, takes on a depth missing if simply read silently to one’s self.
Gorman’s poem complemented, reinforced, the hopeful messages I took away from the day through speeches, songs, prayers and actions.
Words—like unity, resilience, strength, faith, respect, possibilities, together—resonated with me. Words that will write, as President Joe Biden said, “the unfolding story of our great nation.”
And part of that story will be the words of a young poet, who inspired hope on January 20, 2021.
© Copyright 2021 Audrey Kletscher Helbling