Sunflowers for Inauguration Day!

And yet, the dawn is ours before we knew it.
Somehow we do it.
Somehow we weathered and witnessed a nation
that isn’t broken but simply unfinished.

–from “The Hill We Climb,” Amanda Gorman, National Youth Poet Laureate

If you haven’t heard, Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., the 46th President of the United States, was sworn in today.  And history was made today when Kamala Devi Harris, the very first woman and very first Black woman was sworn in as Vice President of the United States. Based on recent events in the USA, it’s hard to believe I bore witness to this bit of history.

I am excited and hopeful and relieved (all adjectives my students used to express their feelings about the inauguration).

One of my students expressed hesitation toward hope. She commented about the propensity [of many Americans] to raise the alarm and fight the good fight but then lapse into inaction when the major crisis is over. Her concern is valid, but the insurrection on Capitol Hill a couple of weeks ago gave us a glimpse of what can happen if we do not guard our democracy fiercely. “The Hill We Climb,” the inaugural poem written and performed by Amanda Gorman, the very first National Youth Poet Laureate, poignantly emphasized this point.

We’ve seen a force that would shatter our nation rather than share it,
Would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy.
And this effort very nearly succeeded.
But while democracy can be periodically delayed,
It can never be permanently defeated.
In this truth, in this faith, we trust.
For while we have our eyes on the future,
history has its eyes on us.

Though we are flawed and prone to temporary amnesia, I am hopeful that we will accept the charge Gorman [implicitly] issued through her poem. It is up to each individual citizen of the United States to protect and uphold democracy.

15 thoughts on “Sunflowers for Inauguration Day!

  1. ShiraDest says:

    “raise the alarm and fight the good fight but then lapse into inaction when the major crisis is over”
    Thank you.
    She is right, and that temporary amnesia often seems to me more to be the default, rather than the norm, unfortunately. This is why I always urged my students to look at the context of words, problems, situations, and to try to see farther (since, “farther along, we’ll know why…”).
    -Shira Destinie

    Liked by 1 person

  2. K E Garland says:

    I hope so, too. But kind of like your students, I’m not so sure. I’m very inspired (naturally) and like to see the bright side; however, America (as a whole) seems to be a lazy lot. And it seems to take extremes to spring into action. I’m including myself in this judgment. I’m hopeful but a wee-bit cautious as we move forward. I also think we need a bit of collective therapy and reflection after the past four years. Otherwise…I’m afraid we could see another Trump-like individual.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Janet from FL says:

    Loved this post! Inauguration Day was beautiful. I cheered and applauded watching from home. I feel relieved and hopeful now. Thank you for the link to Amanda Gorman’s website and video. I definitely want to watch her again!

    Liked by 1 person

Talk to me...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.