The instant #1 New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestseller
The breakout poetry collection by #1 New York Times bestselling author and presidential inaugural poet Amanda Gorman
Formerly titled The Hill We Climb and Other Poems, the luminous poetry collection by #1 New York Times bestselling author and presidential inaugural poet Amanda Gorman captures a shipwrecked moment in time and transforms it into a lyric of hope and healing. In Call Us What We Carry, Gorman explores history, language, identity, and erasure through an imaginative and intimate collage. Harnessing the collective grief of a global pandemic, this beautifully designed volume features poems in many inventive styles and structures and shines a light on a moment of reckoning. Call Us What We Carry reveals that Gorman has become our messenger from the past, our voice for the future.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
A bright star in the poetry world even before she stole the spotlight at Joe Biden’s inauguration, Amanda Gorman offers a compelling collection of pieces reflecting on the past and present, while also laying the foundation for a hopeful future. Full of experiments in form and style (including a chain of iPhone messages, complete with emojis), these poems are a call to action and a request for unity—not just nationally but globally. It’s empowering while never feeling sickly sweet. Believe us, Gorman can pack a serious punch with her words. Exploring big themes including grief, identity, American life, racial inequality, and the pandemic, Gorman makes them all feel incredibly personal. Her descriptions are so emotive, don’t be surprised if you start to feel like her words are speaking directly to you. Call Us What We Carry is cathartic, exciting, and necessary. Gorman’s impactful poems left us with a resounding feeling of hope for the world.
Words Always Matter
Amanda Gorman’s debut collection is a brilliant and smart compilation of pieces that speak to our time. Every word, phrasing, and the pacing matches the long drawn out struggle for harmony over the course of American history. Even the formatting and groupings are adept at encompassing the set and setting for a whole generation. I am grateful to know and have read this first collection of the current Poet Laureate. Someone who has memorialized precious moments so early in her prime.
This collection is heady in all the right ways and yet still accessible to anyone open enough to take a look. Gorman cleverly places references to broader discussions utilizing footnotes and similar to direct us to further reading that will only have you circling back again for another pass at the same poem. Each pass through unearths new meaning with additional contact provided by the outside reading. If this is what we get in her initial effort I cannot wait to see what comes next.
Most importantly, you should know that this is not a typical collection of poems. It’s a carefully put together retrospective, historical analysis, and time capsule. Amanda Gorman draws on various sources and her own beautiful creations to create a tapestry of what America is, has been, and could become. Key moments in America’s history are the brush strokes on the canvass of America’s promise. Too many brushstrokes are represented in blood, and not enough in hope.
Average at best. Some of it is just personal essays. What happened to poetry?