Lin Manuel Miranda's 'Gmorning, Gnight!' Book Deserves A Spot On Your Nightstand
Lin-Manuel Miranda just keeps making good art. I mean, just to name two of his many accomplishments, he created a rap musical about Alexander Hamilton that is pretty much synonymous with "most popular musical ever," then he made children joyful the world over by creating the music for Moana. But, IMO, what's really refreshing and uplifting about Miranda is that, even when his work is about complicated situations, or explores dark themes, it still bursts with love and compassion. So if you're a fan of his, too, you might want to check out Lin-Manuel Miranda's new book, Gmorning, Gnight!, which contains a collection of pep talk poems inspired by his very popular Twitter posts.
Oh, are you not familiar with Miranda's Twitter and his "gmorning/gnight" tweets? Well, allow me to update you a little: Basically, for several years now, Miranda has made a point, just about every single morning and evening, to tweet "good morning" and "good night" to his followers — but not just "good morning" or "good night." My explanation can hardly do Miranda justice, so I'll just let his poetic words speak for themselves. On Oct. 17, for example, the 38-year-old composer tweeted,
Gmorning from me, the wrong side of the bed It was nice waking up with you, Though I know you blame me for all manner of calamity. Sorry. This I promise: Your sh**ty morning/day/week/year is NOT a life sentence Roll over Get up Let’s go
Trust me, even if this is the first time you're hearing about Miranda's daily pep talk tweets in general, his new collection of poems is definitely something you'll want to keep on your nightstand, for those nights when you get a little bummed about the state of the world before going to bed, when you need to smile, or even when you're just having one of those "I'm not crying, you're crying" moments before you hit the pillow.
Miranda recently went on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert to talk about Gmorning, Gnight!, which came out earlier this week, as well as his return to the stage as Alexander Hamilton for a limited run in Puerto Rico.
Now, as for what, specifically, inspired the poems and notes in Gmorning, Gnight!, Miranda admitted to Colbert that, first and foremost, it was definitely what he called his "terrible addiction to Twitter." He told The Late Show host that "you should not give someone who likes an audience, an audience in their pocket." I mean, when that "someone" is Lin-Manuel Miranda, I personally beg to differ. But I guess I see where he's coming from — some people tend to abuse Twitter more than others, you know?
Anyway, Miranda told Colbert that, about a decade ago, he started crafting these "good morning" and "good night" tweets each day as a kind of ritual. His intention, originally, was to write things he needed to hear, but he soon realized that other people probably needed to hear these things, too. "I have no wisdom to give anyone," he told Colbert, smiling. "I am tired all the time. I am as heartbroken to read the news as anyone else."
So, Miranda told Colbert, he simply began to ask himself what he needed in the morning to lift his spirits or give him a boost, wrote that down, and then he switched the pronoun to share that message with his followers. As for the "good night" tweets, he explained that he creates each evening message as a sort of response to the morning tweet. Ugh, I love him.
Now, that daily ritual has blossomed into years and years worth of poems, notes, and rhymes, sent out to the Twitter-verse, filled with love, hope, humor, insight, and, indeed, much solidarity for the state of our wild, mixed-up world.
Not surprisingly, Miranda's messages were, and continue to be, wildly popular, because holy smokes can the man rhyme and drop truth bombs, even with remarkably limited characters available.
As for how this daily habit became an actual book, well, therein lies another lovely twist to the story. Apparently, Miranda told Colbert that it was never his intention to publish the collection. In fact, he explained, a friend he had made on Twitter, named Jonny Sun, was the person who really helped bring the whole thing to life.
Sun is the illustrator of Miranda's collection of poems, so along with all of the composer's wonderful messages, you'll find oh so many beautiful illustrations that are sure to make your heart sing.
And, in case you're feeling a little low even as you read this, I'll sign off with a little poem from Miranda's book that might help enliven your day:
Good Morning/Lead with gratitude/ The air in your lungs, the sky above you. / Proceed from there.