Meet Amanda Gorman, the Poet Who Stole the Show at Biden's Inauguration
Learn more about the talented 22-year-old who captivated the world on Wednesday.
Amanda Gorman had all eyes on her during the inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris at the Capitol in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday. The 22-year-old recited a poem called "The Hill We Climb," partly inspired by the Capitol riots, that reflects on the power of democracy and freedom. Here, five things to know about the literary star.
- Oprah Winfrey is a fan and gave Gorman earrings and a caged bird ring for her Inauguration Day performance, as a tribute to writer Maya Angelou and her poem "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings."
2. She was raised by a single mom. "I'm sure my single mother, Joan Wicks, might describe me as a precocious child, but looking back in elementary school I often self-described myself as a plain 'weird' child," she told The New York Times. "I spent most of elementary school convinced that I was an alien. Literally."
3. She is a Harvard graduate. She became the youngest inaugural poet in history and was named the first National Youth Poet Laureate. "Today I graduate cum laude from Harvard College with a BA in Sociology!" she wrote last year. "Of course I hadn't imagined years ago that my diploma ceremony would be virtual, but I'm so grateful for the memories, knowledge, and above all, friendships that I've garnered throughout this wild ride. As a black girl and descendant of slaves, graduating college, let alone from an Ivy League university, meant I was able to access a knowledge — which is power — that had been kept out of my people's hands for generations."
4. She is a children's book author. Her book Change Sings, which will be in bookstores in September, is available now to pre-order. "I wrote Change Sings as a children's anthem to remind young readers that they have the power to shape the world," she shared on Instagram.
5. Gorman has political ambitions. She has said she wants to run for the White House and become president in 2036.