African-American poet Amanda Gorman, who became a star after her reading at President Joe Biden’s inauguration, has said a security guard claimed she looked “suspicious” and followed her as she walked home. “This is the reality of black girls: One day you’re called an icon, the next day, a threat,” she tweeted Friday.
“He demanded if I lived there because ‘you look suspicious.’ I showed my keys & buzzed myself into my building. He left, no apology,” she wrote. Gorman, whose Twitter account says she lives in Los Angeles, did not immediately reply to an AFP request for more information.
Gorman became an international sensation after reciting her original work “The Hill We Climb” at the inaugural, a poem inspired by the January 6 attack on the US Capitol. The 22-year-old Harvard University graduate was invited to perform in Washington after First Lady Jill Biden saw one of her readings. She was the youngest poet ever to recite at a presidential inauguration, a role first given to Robert Frost by John F. Kennedy in 1961.
Gorman subsequently became the first-ever poet to perform at the National Football League championship Super Bowl, America’s most-watched broadcast of the year. In another tweet on Friday, Gorman wrote: “In a sense, he was right. I AM A THREAT: a threat to injustice, to inequality, to ignorance. Anyone who speaks the truth and walks with hope is an obvious and fatal danger to the powers that be.”-AFP