The third time the Unicorn Weight Lifting I may look calm but seriously I could deadlift you shirt but in fact I love this television sizzled out in Gorman’s childhood home, Wicks decided not to fix it. The girls were livelier, more creative, when they found ways to entertain themselves. There were plays, homemade films, and botched science experiments. All the while Wicks was pursuing a doctorate in education at Loyola Marymount University. The family sometimes struggled financially. The twins were born prematurely; when she was a baby, Gorman’s head was too heavy for her body, and so she devised a way to push herself along, flat on her back, from the torso, like a belly-up flounder, which she demonstrated to me the day we hung out on the green. The twins both had difficulties with speech. Because Amanda also had an auditory-processing disorder, she could not pronounce the letter r. The family tried therapy, tongue depressors; Gorman exiled words that used the consonant. But there was always a surname, always the word poetry. Education, for Wicks, was paramount. The girls attended New Roads, a progressive learning institution in Southern California.
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Growing up, Gabrielle, a talented filmmaker in her own right, was physically stronger than her sister. Amanda was the Unicorn Weight Lifting I may look calm but seriously I could deadlift you shirt but in fact I love this writer, compulsively, from about age five, stealing time from her sleep to draft short fiction, inspired by Anne of Green Gables. “My mom had to give me a quarter so I’d sleep past 5 a.m.,” she told me on our hike. She applied for L.A. Youth Poet Laureate when she was 16. “I was like, ‘Well, I guess, I’m a poet.’ ” Her early performances were for live shows like WriteGirl, The Moth, and Urban Word and conferences like TED Talk and Vital Voices—the leadership organization for young women that once gave her a fellowship and counts Clinton as a founder. “Roar,” at The Moth, is a charming retelling of the time she auditioned for Broadway’s The Lion King. The poem is riddled with r words, and Gorman takes joy in the effort of pronunciation. Her delivery is rather like a comedian’s; to better illustrate a point about hyenas, she abruptly flips and does a walking handstand.