It is said that a picture paints a thousand words, but on Wednesday, National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman delivered 709 words at the 2021 Presidential Inauguration in the form of a poem she wrote called “The Hill We Climb” that painted a memorable, magical picture unto itself.
The 3,097 characters she crafted and then delivered to an audience of millions underscored the power of words and how they can transform attitudes.
Amanda is 22 years old and is as gifted as one can imagine. In an interview with CBS Sunday Morning, she said she wanted to write a poem that promoted hope and unity, but the incident at the Capitol on January 6th really helped bring her emotions to a close. Some of the words from her poem;
“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
We are striving to forge a 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
We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another”
This first-class passage paints a clear understanding of the division hindering the growth of our nation but it also inspires us to put our differences aside, lay down our arms, and reach out to one another.”
Of course we know it’s not quite that easy, but her words are inspiring.
Putting words to paper is an art form all on its own. Whether it’s for an inaugural address or for a marketing brochure, copywriting requires talent like a graphic designer, sculptor, music composer, or painter. It’s being able to use words in a way that engages and compels.
Amanda Gorman is a talent to watch – she is gifted with the ability to write, and despite a speech impediment — one she so wonderfully overcame — and she delivered us her creation with grace and inspiration.