Amanda Gorman’s star continued its remarkable climb Thursday following the presidential laureate’s resounding delivery of her poem during the US presidential inauguration.
Within hours of Wednesday’s delivery, her soul-stirring reading of The Hill We Climb, at the swearing-in of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris had landed the 22-year-old’s two upcoming books at the top of Amazon’s bestseller list.
“I am on the floor. My books are number 1 and number 2 on Amazon after day 1,” the Los Angeles native wrote on Twitter.
Gorman, who described herself as a book worm as a child, overcame a speech impediment in her youth to become the first US national youth poet laureate in 2017.
She has now joined the ranks of inaugural poets such as Robert Frost and Maya Angelou.
With the honor of being the youngest poet in US history to mark the transition of presidential power, Gorman’s collection debuted her collection, also titled The Hill We Climb, which won the Harvard University graduate the top spot in online retailer’s sale charts.
On a day for the history books, @TheAmandaGorman delivered a poem that more than met the moment. Young people like her are proof that “there is always light, if only we’re brave enough to see it; if only we’re brave enough to be it.” pic.twitter.com/mbywtvjtEH
Her upcoming project geared to youth titled Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem followed closely behind. Both books are both due out in September.
According to the New York Times, Gorman said she had been struggling to write the inaugural poem. But then came the 6 January assault on the US Capitol, compelling her to stay up all night to finish it, this time certain of what she wanted to say.
“Being American is more than a pride we inherit. It’s the past we step into and how we repair it,” Gorman read as her yellow coat beamed from the steps of the US Capitol, just two weeks after the attempted insurrection and following a year of global protests for racial justice.
The performance stirred instant acclaim, with praise from across the country and political spectrum including the Republican-backing Lincoln Project and the former president Barack Obama.
“Wasn’t [Gorman’s] poem just stunning? She’s promised to run for president in 2036 and I for one can’t wait,” tweeted the former US secretary of state and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
I can’t help but think that Maya Angelou is looking down from Heaven proud at the #BlackGirlMagic that is Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman.
The poet’s social media also boomed, surging from her initial tens of thousands to well over a million in new followers to her Twitter fanbase.
By Wednesday night, an audibly stunned Anderson Cooper echoed the public’s admiration on his show, revealing he was “transfixed” by the young poet’s words.
A humble Gorman took the praise in stride, however, thanking followers while sharing her mantra she said not only motivates her before performances, but also spoke to the significance of the historic inauguration .
“I’m the daughter of Black writers,” Gorman said. “We’re descended from freedom fighters who broke through chains and change the world.
They call me.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.