A Delightful Anthem by Amanda Gorman

This book is a work of art.

Recently, a generous patron read one of my blog posts and responded to my plea that people purchase children’s books from my Clark Lake Park Little Free Library Wish List, so that the children in my neighborhood would be exposed to a wide variety of cultures and concepts.

When the box arrived, I was excited to see, in particular, the book Change Sings by Amanda Gorman. Ever since I heard Ms. Gorman read her poem at President Biden’s Inauguration, I have been so impressed by this young lady. I have this dream that she and Malala Yousafzai team up to rule the world, and it therefore becomes a much more beautiful, peaceful, inclusive, and loving place. But I digress.

Change Sings is a gorgeously written anthem that gives me hope that the children of today will perhaps do better by this world than my generation has done. It’s a book about making positive changes by using your special abilities. It encourages us to join our voices together, and if we do so anything is possible. Reading this book leaves you with a powerful feeling of hope and potential.

And the illustrations by Loren Long are amazing. He’s the #1 New York Times bestselling illustrator, and he deserves it. This book is a work of art. If I had a child, I’d buy several copies of this book and wallpaper their room with the pages.

I encourage you to check out the Amazon page for this book and click on the “look inside” feature to see more of the artwork. After that, head over here to hear Ms. Gorman recite part of the book in her beautiful voice. Then, see the interview she did about this book on the Today show. If after all that you can resist buying a copy of the book yourself, you have much more willpower than I do.

Now that I’ve written this blog post about it, it’s time to leave this literary gem in my little free library. It’s going to be extremely hard for me to let this one go. I hope whoever takes it enjoys it as much as I have.

And while you’re over at Amazon, look what I wrote! http://amzn.to/2mlPVh5

Even More Impressed with Amanda Gorman

Even more of a triumph, knowing this…

In case you’ve been living under a rock, Amanda Gorman is the 22-year-old National Youth Poet Laureate who recited this amazing poem at Biden’s inauguration. The minute she opened her mouth, I was mesmerized. The words, the syntax, and the way she was moving her hands, it all seemed like a well-choreographed, artistic dance of mind, body, and spirit. That’s something you don’t normally see in one so young. That, and more superficially, I adored her coat and hat, and she’s absolutely beautiful.

From less than 6 minutes on stage, she has become America’s Sweetheart, and rightly so. She gives me hope for the future of this nation. We need more poets. (And isn’t it refreshing to have a leader who allows others to shine in his presence?)

The only criticism I’ve come across is that some folks think the poem should have rhymed. What are we? Three years old? Poems do NOT have to rhyme. I actually prefer the ones that don’t.

But what I just learned, from this article, is that Ms. Gorman has speech and auditory processing disorders, most likely from having been born prematurely. She struggles to pronounce and hear certain sounds. She has particular trouble with the letter R and SH. She was entirely incapable of pronouncing Rs until two or three short years ago. She actually took up poetry to help herself overcome these issues.

Now that you know that about her, listen to her recitation again. Knowing what you now know, it’s even more remarkable that she was able to do it so perfectly and while exuding so much self-confidence. I’m sure she is a role model to many. I am so impressed.

National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman reads her work, “An American Lyric,” at the inaugural reading of Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith, September 13, 2017. Photo by Shawn Miller.

Claim your copy of A Bridgetender’s View: Notes on Gratitude today and you’ll be supporting StoryCorps too! http://amzn.to/2mlPVh5