Call Us What We Carry

April is National Poetry Month which means today is the perfect time for a post about Amanda Gorman’s collection Call Us What We Carry

This was a book I read slowly, little by little, to savor the rhythm and eloquence of the words. My copy is full of sticky notes, marking the pages where I felt especially moved. Here are just a few such passages:

From “At First”:

“We became paid professionals of pain,

Specialists in suffering,

Aces of the ache,

Masters of the moan.

March shuddered into a year,

Sloshing with millions of lonely,

An overcrowded solitude.”

From “& So”:

“Since the world is round,

There is no way to walk away

From each other, for even then

We are coming back together.”

From “Fury & Faith”:

But the point of protest isn’t winning;

It’s holding fast to the promise of freedom,

Even when fast victory is not promised.

Meaning, we cannot stand up to police

If we cannot cease policing our imagination,

Convincing our communities that this won’t work,

When the work hasn’t even begun,

That this can wait.

When we’ve already waited out a thousand suns.

By now, we understand

That white supremacy

& the despair it demands

Are as destructive as any disease.” 

From “The Miracle of Morning”:

“While we might feel small, separate & all alone,

Our people have never been more closely tethered.

The question isn’t if we can weather this unknown,

But how we will weather this unknown together.

So, on this meaningful morn, we mourn & we mend.

Like light, we can’t be broken, even when we bend.”

And, in case you missed it, you can click here to read my post about Ms. Gorman’s collectible gift edition of The Hill We Climb