We saw a force that would break our nation rather than share it,
would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy.
And this effort almost succeeded.
But if democracy can be periodically delayed,
it can never be defeated definitively.
In this truth, in this faith, we trust.
‘Cause while our eyes are on the future,
history is watching us.
“I hope my poem will be a moment of unity for our country,” she told Washington Post book reviewer Ron Charles last week, “that with my words I can speak of a new chapter and a new era for our nation. “
She did, with a beautifully delivered poem full of alliteration and internal rhymes.
You would never guess that a few years ago Gorman had a speech problem. As she told Lily earlier this year, writing was a way of self-expression when she found herself unable to verbalize her thoughts. The music helped her overcome her obstacle, which included difficulty pronouncing the letter R. The remedy, in part, turned out to be tunes from Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Pulitzer-winning musical.
“My favorite thing to practice was the song Aaron Burr, Sir, from ‘Hamilton’ because it’s packed with R. And I said, ‘If I can follow Leslie in this song then I’m about to be able to. say that R in a poem, ”she told CBS News.
In gratitude, Gorman tweeted that she had included two references to “Hamilton” in “The Hill We Climb”. (Miranda noticed and replied to Gorman on Twitter: “You were perfect. Perfectly written, perfectly delivered. Every piece. Brava!”) She also paid tribute to a previous inaugural poet. When Oprah tweeted her congratulations, Gorman replied, “I wouldn’t be anywhere without the women I dance to. While reciting my poem, I wore a ring with a caged bird – a gift from @Oprah for the occasion, to symbolize Maya Angelou, a former inaugural poet. Here are the women who have already climbed my hills.
Gorman is set to release two books this year, “Change Sings,” a picture book, and his first collection of poetry, also titled “The Hill We Climb”.