Archive for Jane Yolen

Poetry and the Olympics: Michael Phelps and Me

As of now, Michael Phelps is the most decorated Olympian of all time.  Wow – that is so exciting!  And, as much of a star as he is, he’s also been known to make mistake or two. I, too, have been know to make a mistake now and again.  🙂  And I’d like to apologize for at least one of them here.  My apologies to Jane Yolen, Mary Oliver, Jack Gilbert, Gwendolyn Brooks, and Tony Hoagland. In my enthusiasm for your amazing work, I posted your poems without asking for your permission or for the permission of your estates.  I hope you can forgive me.  Please know that l’ll be removing your poems from my previous posts, and replacing them with links…  And, starting right now, I’ll be posting only links or original poems, such as the one I posted yesterday by my friend Ken Carlson, and the one I am posting right now, by me!

The Call to Connect

There is a need I have
To connect
From waaaay down deep inside me
To waaaay down deep inside you.

You can take that to mean something
Sexual, and sometimes it does,
But mostly it doesn’t.
Mostly, it means

I have a need to see you, know you, feel you and
To be seen, known, felt by you.
And then there comes the time when I am done
Connecting with you.

This is when the call comes
To connect with me
Only. Sometimes
I answer.

Laura Overstreet Biering (Copyright 2008)


Poetry and the Olympics: My Opening Ceremony

On the way to my weekly networking meeting this morning, I happened to hear a cool story on NPR.  It was about how in the early days of the Olympics – and I mean the earliest days, as in B.C.E. – poetry was an integral part of the festivities.  And how, at the 1912 Games in Stockholm, music, architecture, and painting were added, as well. One could even win medals in these categories! Sadly, however, after the London Games in 1948, this type of competition was suspended.

Hence, my tribute over the days of this year’s Olympic Games in London.  While I won’t be posting poems strictly about  sport, I will be posting some of my favorites, and I hope you’ll give them a chance to win gold in your heart, as well!

Let’s celebrate last night’s Opening Ceremony with an ode to roundness, as in the Olympic rings, among other things…

“Fat is not a Fairy Tale” by Jane Yolen (from Billy Collins’ Poetry 180: A Turning Back to Poetry).  Please go here to read this poem.