These Amanda Gorman fun facts will help you know more about this up-and-coming poet.
Most Americans probably hadn’t heard of Amanda Gorman until she read her poem for President Joe Biden’s inauguration. An international broadcast with all eyes focused on a talented 22-year-old brought the focus clearly on the young poet.
And, did she ever deliver. She dazzled attendees and TV viewers with her words, poise, beauty, and style.
Let’s find out more about Amanda Gorman with 22 fun facts.
Amanda Gorman Facts
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
Profession: Poet, Author, Model, Performer
Fun Facts About Amanda Gorman
Amanda has accomplished a lot in just 22 years on earth, but look for even more from this rising star.
1.) Poetic goal and influence
Per the New York Times, Amanda said, “I want to create poems that stand the test of time and counter the fragmented news culture of today,” she said. She draws inspiration from news events.
2.) Amanda began writing songs at age five
She likely got a head start on most writers. Her family didn’t have a lot of technology in her house growing up.
3.) She was raised by a single mother
Her mother, an English teacher, encouraged her to write poems and songs. Gorman notes in a Time Magazine interview, “We’ve been raised like you, by a strong Black woman who taught us to value our ideas and our voices.”
4.) Wants to be President of the United States one day
“This is a long, long, faraway goal, but 2036 I am running for office to be president of the United States. So you can put that in your iCloud calendar.”
Amanda Gorman reads inauguration poem, “The Hill We Climb”
5.) It’s good to have goals
She also “aspires to be a human rights advocate.”
6.) Harvard grad
Gorman earned her BA in sociology at Harvard University in 2020. She graduated Cum Laude and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
7.) She’s a twin
Her twin sister Gabrielle is an activist.
8.) Gorman had a speech impediment
During her childhood, Amanda had a speech impediment. She is also hypersensitive to sound. She doesn’t view her speech impediment as a crutch, but more as a strength.
Because of her experience, she became really effective at reading and writing. She incorporated songs into her speech therapy, particularly liking the Aaron Burr song from Hamilton because it had so much usage of the letter “R.”
9.) She’s a Black Catholic
She is a member of St. Brigid Catholic Church in Los Angeles.
10.) Youth Delegate for United Nations
Inspired by a speech from Pakistani Nobel Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai, she became a youth delegate for the United Nations in 2013.
11.) She was a featured guest on John Krasinski’s Some Good News program
She was able to virtually meet Oprah Winfrey on the show.
12.) “The Hill We Climb” poem
She read her poem “The Hill We Climb” at Joe Biden’s inauguration on January 20, 2021. She was the youngest poet to ever read at a presidential inauguration in history (age 22).
13.) Inspiration for “The Hill We Climb”
She wrote some of the verses of the poem after watching the Trump rioters attempt to siege the Capitol on January 6, 2021. However, much was written before the events of January 6.
14.) She repeats a mantra to boost her confidence
The mantra is a twist off of a Disney song. She has tailored it to say, “I’m the daughter of Black writers who are descended from Freedom Fighters who broke their chains and changed the world. They call me.”
Amanda Gorman TED Talk video
15.) Author of three upcoming books
Her three upcoming books The Hill We Climb (a poetry collection), The Hill We Climb (a book version of the poem) and Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem have first printings of one million copies. She has also authored The One for Whom Food Is Not Enough.
16.) Gorman is an instant fashion icon
IMG Models represents Gorman for fashion, beauty, and talent endorsements.
17.) The poet wears Prada
The headband she wore at the inauguration reading was a padded satin piece in a shade labeled “Fiery Red.”
18.) Super Bowl Sunday performance
Amanda Gorman is scheduled to recite poetry on the Super Bowl pre-game show on February 7 before the Kansas City Chiefs defend their Super Bowl title against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
She has the potential to reach three times the number of viewers with her Super Bowl performance relative to the inauguration audience.
19.) Her Super Bowl poem
For the Super Bowl performance, she’ll be reciting a poem honoring a Los Angeles educator, a Florida nurse, and a Pittsburgh Marine veteran for their work during the pandemic.
20.) Poetry and protests
In her Time Magazine interview (conducted by Michelle Obama), Gorman says, “Poetry and language are often at the heartbeat of movements for change. If we look to the Black Lives Matter protest, you see banners that say, They buried us but they didn’t know we were seeds. That’s poetry being marshaled to speak of racial justice. If you analyze Martin Luther King’s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech, it’s a great document of rhetoric that’s also a great document of poetry, of imagery, of the song. Never underestimate the power of art as the language of the people.”
21.) A wizard with words
Example one: “The first bud of spring sings the other seeds into joining her uprising.” Example two: “There is always light if only we’re brave enough to see it. If only we’re brave enough to be it.” – Amanda Gorman — Enough said.
22.) Advice for young girls and Black girls in particular
The Time Magazine article notes Gorman’s response (part of which is excerpted here), “You really have to crown yourself with the belief that what I’m about and what I’m here for is way beyond this moment. I’m learning that I am not lightning that strikes once. I am the hurricane that comes every single year, and you can expect to see me again soon.”
Amanda Gorman is quite the accomplished poet and writer and such a young age. We’ll be expecting to see her again soon.
By Mike O’Halloran
Mike is the founder and editor of Greeting Card Poet.
You’re on our 22 Poet Amanda Gorman Fun Facts page.
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