Culture / People

Amanda Gorman leads us into the New Year with a hopeful poem

2021 has been a time, that's for sure. A good one? Well, we're not so certain about that. Now, as we teeter on the final edges of the year that felt like a long, continuous kick in get the gist, we're finding it hard to muster up the chutzpah needed to embrace the New Year. Can you blame us?

If you're strapping yourself in and lowering your expectations for 2022, there is one flickering light to give you strength for whatever lie ahead. As always, it can be found in the words of Amanda Gorman, who famously performed her poem The Hill We Climb at the inauguration of US President Joe Biden. The poet is guiding us valiantly into the New Year with New Day's Lyric, a brand new poem where the verses are doused in images of optimism, unity and renewal.


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In an interview with Vanity Fair ahead of the poems release on December 30 via Instagram, Gorman explained the motivation behind her words. “I’m looking forward to working with Instagram because part of what inspired me to write this New Year’s poem was thinking about the narratives and the stories that I’ve seen shared throughout the past two years, whether it’s reconciling with grief, loss, social change, climate change,” she said. “And so many of those narratives, I feel, we interact or meet with on social media.”

At a time of prolonged uncertainty, where division is the order of the day, we can't help but fall upon Amanda Gorman's poem. It's a salve for our world weary senses. Find a full transcription of the poem by Amanda Gorman, below.

May this be the day
We come together.
Mourning, we come to mend,
Withered, we come to weather,
Torn, we come to tend,
Battered, we come to better.
Tethered by this year of yearning,
We are learning
That though we weren’t ready for this,
We have been readied by it.
We steadily vow that no matter
How we are weighed down,
We must always pave a way forward.

This hope is our door, our portal.
Even if we never get back to normal,
Someday we can venture beyond it,
To leave the known and take the first steps.
So let us not return to what was normal,
But reach toward what is next.

What was cursed, we will cure.
What was plagued, we will prove pure.
Where we tend to argue, we will try to agree,
Those fortunes we forswore, now the future we foresee,
Where we weren’t aware, we’re now awake;
Those moments we missed
Are now these moments we make,
The moments we meet,
And our hearts, once all together beaten,
Now all together beat.

Come, look up with kindness yet,
For even solace can be sourced from sorrow.
We remember, not just for the sake of yesterday,
But to take on tomorrow.

We heed this old spirit,
In a new day’s lyric,
In our hearts, we hear it:
For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne.
Be bold, sang Time this year,
Be bold, sang Time,
For when you honor yesterday,
Tomorrow ye will find.
Know what we’ve fought
Need not be forgot nor for none.
It defines us, binds us as one,
Come over, join this day just begun.
For wherever we come together,
We will forever overcome.


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