President Barack Obama, left, shakes hands with poet Richard Blanco during the ceremonial swearing-in West Front of the U.S. Capitol during the 57th Presidential Inauguration in Washington, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Miami-raised poet Richard Blanco recited a poem of unity that evoked his childhood and the spirit of America at the second inauguration of President Barack Obama on Monday.
The poet, who was born in Spain to Cuban exiles, recited his poem "One Today" at the ceremonial swearing-in of President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.
Blanco, 44, is the youngest inaugural poet and the first Latino and gay inaugural poet.
Blanco's parents emigrated to New York City days after he was born, then settled in Miami. He later attended Florida International University and now lives in Maine.
Before the inauguration, Blanco said he was speechless when he was told he'd be delivering the original poem, according to the Miami Herald.
"It took me 10 minutes to remember what the word for inauguration is in Spanish," Blanco told the Herald.
He also spoke about his mother, Geysa, a Cuban exile who gave him strength.
"She is a very brave woman and has worked hard all her life for my brother and me," Blanco said.