‘It is they who every day honor us’: Amanda Gorman honors frontline workers in Super Bowl poem
TAMPA - Poet Amanda Gorman honored teachers, military veterans and frontline healthcare workers in her poem recited at Super Bowl 55.
Gorman, 22, read an original poem Sunday during the pregame festivities in Tampa, Florida. The poem, titled "Chorus of the Captains," was a tribute to three people for their contributions during the pandemic: educator Trimaine Davis, nurse manager Suzie Dorner and Marine veteran James Martin.
"What a moment," the NFL tweeted on Sunday.
Gorman didn't perform on the field but appeared in a taped video message that combined her reading with images of the three honorary captains.
Davis is an educator from Los Angeles. Throughout the pandemic, he worked to provide his students and their households with digital devices and internet access. He secured hotspots, laptops and tablets for students while hosting tech workshops for families, ensuring they knew how to work the device.
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Dorner, a nurse manager at Tampa General Hospital, lost two grandparents to the COVID-19 pandemic. She represents the thousands of healthcare workers who’ve fought to bring the pandemic to an end.
Referee Carl Cheffers #51 fist bumps nurse Suzie Dorner before Super Bowl LV between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium on February 07, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Martin is a Marine Corps Veteran from Pittsburgh. During the pandemic, he connected more than 1,800 veterans, and their families through the Wounded Warrior Project using its livestreaming and video game events.
"Let us walk with these warriors,
Charge on with these champions,
And carry forth the call of our captains.
We celebrate them by acting,
With courage and compassion,
By doing what is right and just.
For while we honor them today,
It is they who every day honor us."
"Poetry at the Super Bowl is a feat for art and our country, because it means we’re thinking imaginatively about human connection even when we feel siloed," Gorman said Sunday on Twitter. "I’ll honor three heroes who exemplify the best of this effort. Here’s to them, to poetry and to a Super Bowl like no other."
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Gorman, previously the country's first National Youth Poet Laureate, was the youngest person to ever recite a poem at the U.S. presidential inauguration. Her reading of "The Hill We Climb" at the Capitol immediately became a sensation. An illustrated book of her poem quickly zoomed to the top of bestseller lists. Shortly after the inauguration, she signed with IMG Models, an agency that represents supermodels, tennis star Naomi Osaka and playwright Jeremy O. Harris. This week, she covers Time Magazine, in an interview conducted by Michelle Obama.
Afterward, the NFL invited the 22-year-old poet laureate to participate in the pregame pageantry at the NFL championship.
The poem preceded the pregame coin flip won by the Kansas City Chiefs, who kicked off to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. This story was reported from Los Angeles.