January 24, 2021

Light and Shade


One sun rose on us today, kindled over our shores, peeking over the Smokies, greeting the faces of the Great Lakes, spreading a simple truth across the Great Plains, then charging across the Rockies.

When day comes we ask ourselves, where can we find light in this never ending shade?

In today’s sharp sparkle, this winter air, anything can be made, any sentence begun.

But seek no honor in my shadow. I will give you no hiding place down here.

Lift up your eyes upon this day breaking for you.


A Cento Poem created from lines of past Inaugural addresses. After listening and watching Amanda Gorman’s poem recitation at the recent Inauguration I became curious about past Inauguration poems. I found them and started looking for common themes between them.

The lines above are from the following poems:

Angelou, M. (1993). On the pulse of morning (Bill Clinton’s Inauguration 1993)

Alexander, E. (2009). Praise song for the day (Barak Obama’s Inauguration 2009)

Blanco, R. (2013) One Today. (President Barak Obama’s Inauguration 2013)

Gorman, A. (2021), The Hill We Climb. (President Joe Biden’s Inauguration 2021)