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What Richard Blanco Read at Barack Obama’s Inauguration

Inaugural poet Richard Blanco read “One Today” for President Barack Obama‘s inauguration in Washington D.C. yesterday. What did you think of the poem? Here is an excerpt:

My face, your face, millions of faces in morning’s mirrors,
each one yawning to life, crescendoing into our day:
pencil-yellow school buses, the rhythm of traffic lights,
fruit stands: apples, limes, and oranges arrayed like rainbows
begging our praise. Silver trucks heavy with oil or paper — bricks or milk, teeming over highways alongside us,
on our way to clean tables, read ledgers, or save lives — to teach geometry, or ring up groceries, as my mother did
for 20 years, so I could write this poem.

Below, we’ve linked to 14 of Blanco’s poems online, including the free poetry chapbook, Place of Mind.

14 Richard Blanco Poems You Can Read Online

Place of Mind Chapbook

“Looking for The Gulf Motel”

Burning in the Rain

América

Photo of a Man on Sunset Drive: 1914, 2008

El Florida Room

Here’s more from the poet’s official biography:

Blanco was made in Cuba, assembled in Spain, and imported to the United States—meaning his mother, seven months pregnant, and the rest of the family arrived as exiles from Cuba to Madrid where he was born. Only forty-five days later, the family emigrated once more and settled in New York City, then eventually in Miami where he was raised and educated. His acclaimed first book of poetry, City of a Hundred Fires, explores the yearnings and negotiation of cultural identity as a Cuban American, and received the Agnes Starrett Poetry Prize from the University of Pittsburgh Press.

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