To help bring Amanda Gorman and her work to life in your class, discuss the thematic connections and ideas that run through Gorman’s poetry and connect stories, ideas, people, events, and places. Encourage students to be the change they want to see in the world and to create their own works of art that inspire those around them.
Here are some themes to explore, activities, and additional resources to get started:
In Call Us What We Carry, many of the poems play with form in unconventional ways. When writing your own poetry, and reading poems written by others, take note of the way that form can be connected to function. If, for example, one wishes to write about America, what might be the emotional impact of writing that poem in the shape of an American flag? Some of the most historically recognized poets use deliberate form and function not only for the measurement of lines and stanzas but inside those lines as they craft rhyme and meter. Learn more about the details of poetic rhyme and meter from Mary Oliver in “Flare, Form, and Meter”.