Inauguration 2013: Poet Richard Blanco Interview

Civil engineer turned poet talks about reading at President Obama's second inauguration.
3:23 | 01/21/13

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Transcript for Inauguration 2013: Poet Richard Blanco Interview
-- Cutler ABC news correspondent Cutler is on the mall and just had a chance to speak. With the public who will be reading -- today stands. Yeah absolutely -- really just didn't set the -- -- -- -- here there's now -- wave a flag that has descended upon them all here they've been handing out flags it's amazing how quickly they can just. Instead of -- entire area it's just a beautiful sight to see -- obviously we've been seen here. -- -- positions on the inaugural Pollard is relatively Miller started back in 1961 when president Kennedy had tapped. Robert Frost to deliver opponents since that time there have been four inaugural poets today's -- He is Richard blog go and in this elite group he will be a standout. Because he is a civil engineer that decided to try his hand at writing or a little bit later on in his life. There was not a creative spirit. I was -- squashed. And after I graduated I went back -- fooling around with poetry -- to be creative writing course. And a community college eventually got accepted into -- MFA program at Florida international university and got my first book published. Which was my creative pieces another book went on to teach poetry went back to engineering for a little while -- here move there but it always kept maintained both carriers going at the same time. -- no way I'm wired so who made the call how did you find out you were selected we're not sure exactly how it happens. You know like paving -- of them working for for very long time in -- -- -- -- at that time had called texted me I was driving from New York back to -- and is usually very -- fellow. And they texting me all caps called me immediately -- percent. Somebody died here it's very good news. So it must had a tremendous amount of pressure when you're sitting down as a writer trying to create something that -- is going to be heard by millions of people but. By the president. They say they wanted to amusement three homes and had two to three weeks since it. So luckily it was a topic that was had always been in a team that had always been of course not at this scale. And those who is great learning process of how how to how to write about a subject that heard the challenge -- how to write about it. So did so quiet -- in the -- maintain some kind of intimate voice. Quality that it that my writing is known for because after all I I have to be of the -- you know my voice. For some reason they picked me you know and I didn't want to sound like somebody else -- -- You know isn't just sort of a political speech and that's what this is about dozens of homes had to be Richard -- some time. -- thanks so much. I'm hopeful. It was able to do -- I'm not afraid to admit that he is in fact a little nervous he did share with me -- he was -- mercy over the weekend. Up there on the podium in the capital he said that despite the fact that we see this expansive scenery and so many thousands of people out there it's actually have very intimate setting in and it's very personal out there. And that -- kind of calm his nerves a little bit he said he's ready to go -- deliver obviously the most important column that we'll probably never resign him.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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