Poetry Sunday: Hymn for the Hurting by Amanda Gorman

You probably remember poet Amanda Gorman from her appearance at the inauguration of President Biden. She read her poem "The Hill We Climb" on that occasion. After the senseless slaughter in Uvalde this week, she was inspired to write another poem which was published in The New York Times. It seemed perfect for the occasion and so I stole it in order to feature it here, just in case you didn't get a chance to read it in the Times.

Hymn for the Hurting

by Amanda Gorman

Everything hurts,
Our hearts shadowed and strange,
Minds made muddied and mute.
We carry tragedy, terrifying and true.
And yet none of it is new;
We knew it as home,
As horror,
As heritage.
Even our children
Cannot be children,
Cannot be.

Everything hurts.
It’s a hard time to be alive,
And even harder to stay that way.
We’re burdened to live out these days,
While at the same time, blessed to outlive them.

This alarm is how we know
We must be altered —
That we must differ or die,
That we must triumph or try.
Thus while hate cannot be terminated,
It can be transformed
Into a love that lets us live.

May we not just grieve, but give:
May we not just ache, but act;
May our signed right to bear arms
Never blind our sight from shared harm;
May we choose our children over chaos.
May another innocent never be lost.


  1. I think that Amanda has no doubt spoken for all of us, as she no doubt will again.

    1. She does have a way of expressing our feelings for us. Until "we choose our children over chaos" I sense that these terrible events will continue to happen.

  2. Taking Eleanor to school on Wednesday was awful. I cried the whole way to my own school. When nothing changed after Sandy Hook, I knew we'd lost our soul.

    1. Our society worships the great god Gun and he requires regular human sacrifices.

  3. We lost our way years ago. I am hoping Amanda Gorman and others can help us find the path to sanity again.

    1. One would like to think so, but I admit I am not hopeful. When one of these incidents happens, everyone decries the violence and says it must be stopped, but no one seems willing to take an actual positive step to stop it.

  4. Powerful words! And so perfect for this moment in time. She is truly talented.

    1. She is a very talented poet with a gift for translating the public psyche into words.

  5. I'm glad you included Gorman's poem. It seems we need to act & let our voices be heard ... but we've been thwarted for 10 years of nothing ... It's beyond sanity.

    1. The gun companies have a strangle-hold on our government because of the big bucks they give the politicians. Until we can change that, I don't see things getting any better. The truth is more children will be sacrificed to the great god Gun.

  6. She has a way with words that I love. I just wish something would change. I have no hope anymore that this country will ever fix its gun laws and the idea of more innocent people - children even more so - losing their lives needlessly just rips my heart out.

    1. It is evident that we love our guns more than we love our children in this country, and I'm not sure how that can be fixed as long as our government remains in the pocket of gun manufacturers.

  7. "Even our children
    Cannot be children,
    Cannot be."

    A powerful poem.


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