Amanda Gorman’s Inauguration Poem: “The Hill We Climb”

Amanda Gorman, a 22-year-old poet, gained widespread acclaim for her reading of the poem “The Hill We Climb” during Joe Biden’s presidential inauguration on January 20, 2021. Gorman, the National Youth Poet Laureate and the youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history, captivated the audience with her powerful words and delivery.

Background and Inspiration

Gorman was invited to speak at the inauguration by First Lady Jill Biden, who had previously seen her perform at the Library of Congress. She was given the theme of “America United” but was not given any specific guidelines on what to write. Gorman began working on the poem and was about halfway finished when the Capitol building was stormed by pro-Trump rioters on January 6, 2021. This event influenced her work, and she felt it was important to address the harsh truths that America needed to confront.

Key Themes and Message

“The Hill We Climb” explores themes of unity, justice, resilience, and hope. Gorman’s poem acknowledges the challenges and darkness the country has faced but also emphasizes the potential for growth and progress. She speaks to the unfinished nature of the nation and the importance of coming together to create a more inclusive and purposeful union.

Important Excerpt from the Poem:  “The Hill We Climb” by Amanda Gorman:

“When day comes we ask ourselves,
where can we find light in this never-ending shade?
The loss we carry,
a sea we must wade
We’ve braved the belly of the beast
We’ve learned that quiet isn’t always peace
And the norms and notions
of what just is
Isn’t always just-ice
And yet the dawn is ours
before we knew it
Somehow we do it
Somehow we’ve weathered and witnessed
a nation that isn’t broken
but simply unfinished
We the successors of a country and a time
Where a skinny Black girl
descended from slaves and raised by a single mother
can dream of becoming president
only to find herself reciting for one
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…”

Reception and Impact

Amanda Gorman’s performance and her poem received widespread praise and recognition. Former President Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, and Lin-Manuel Miranda were among those who lauded her for her powerful words and performance. Gorman’s poem resonated with many people and became a symbol of hope and inspiration during a time of political transition and social challenges.


Amanda Gorman’s poem “The Hill We Climb” captivated the audience during Joe Biden’s inauguration. Through her powerful words, Gorman addressed the challenges faced by the nation while emphasizing unity, justice, and hope. Her performance and poem received widespread acclaim and left a lasting impact on those who heard her words.

Watch Poem here also…!