Amanda Gorman will become the youngest poet to recite her work during a presidential inauguration when Joe Biden takes the oath as the 46th president of the United States on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021. Gorman, 22, will recite a poem titled “The Hill We Climb,” which talks about the insurrection two weeks ago at the U.S. Capitol.
Gorman shared her excitement on Instagram. “WHAT AN HONOR to be the Inaugural Poet of 2021. I am so excited to be joining our next President and Vice President @JoeBiden and @KamalaHarris for #Inauguration2021! Tune in at bideninaugural.org. See you there @bideninaugural.”
The award-winning African American writer is a Harvard graduate and became the first youth poet laureate in Los Angeles in 2014. Three years later, she was named the country’s first national youth poet laureate. Biden’s inaugural committee reached out to the writer in December and informed Gorman that she’d been recommended by the incoming first lady, Jill Biden.
Gorman spoke with CNN about how her poem. “As I was crafting this piece, it was really trying to communicate a message of joining together and crossing divides,” she explained. “It’s really sitting in the wounds and the scars that we have, so that we can then move onto healing and move on the progress that needs to happen.”
Gorman will be part of the inaugural celebration along with Lady Gaga, who will sing the national anthem. Tom Hanks will then host a prime-time special on Biden’s inauguration later that day called “Celebrating America” that will air at 8:30 p.m. EST on ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC and CNN.
John Legend, Jennifer Lopez, Bruce Springsteen, Justin Timberlake, Bon Jovi, Ant Clemons, Demi Lovato and the Foo Fighters are all scheduled to perform. Actresses Eva Longoria and Kerry Washington also will take part in the show, which will be attended by Biden and Harris.