#61 Praise Song for the Day by Elizabeth Alexander


President Obama’s first inauguration on January 20, 2009, was made more dramatic by his designation of African American writer and scholar Elizabeth Alexander as the official poet of the occasion. Following in the tradition established by Robert Frost at John F. Kennedy’s inauguration, Alexander read her original composition “Praise Song for the Day”—a poem rich with allusions to American history and the promise of the nation’s future. (Praise Song for the Day, A Poem for Barack Obama’s Presidential Inauguration, January 20, 2009, ©2009 by Elizabeth Alexander, first published by Graywolf Press, is used with the permission of the Author.)

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