Born in 1883, in what is now Lebanon, Kahlil Gibran emigrated to the United States with his mother and siblings in 1895. On arrival in the US, his mother, Kamila, began work as a peddler. The family endured financial hardship, but Gibran was able to attend school through a charity program. With no formal education, he began school in a class with other immigrant children who spoke little or no English. Kamila worked hard to support her children, invested in a business and their social standing improved.
However, those first years in Boston, far from his childhood home and living in poverty, impacted Kahlil deeply. Kamila gave her son the opportunity to stay in school and the space to explore Boston’s artistic side. Gibran’s talent as an artist was noticed and nurtured by his teachers. Today, Gibran’s works have been exhibited internationally, but he is more renowned for his writings. Author of The Prophet, The Madman, and more, he is the third most-read poet in history.