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14 Great Poems To Read On Inauguration Day

There's no official inaugural poem this year, so here are 14 that describe America as it is and as it could be.

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"America" by Walt Whitman

“Centre of equal daughters, equal sons, / All, all alike endear’d, grown, ungrown, young or old,”

"America" by Claude McKay

"I will confess / I love this cultured hell that tests my youth."


"The Beautifully Worthless" by Ali Liebegott

“A thousand ways to be lost in this country -- / good lost, bad lost -- people pushed by broom edges, /flicked by bristle tips into corners....”

"Ghazal: America The Beautiful" by Alicia Ostriker

"I said One Nation Invisible until corrected / maybe I was right about America."

Tomi Obaro is a senior culture editor for BuzzFeed and is based in New York.

Contact Tomi Obaro at

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