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'Lifting,' And Lifted By, Words

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'Lifting,' And Lifted By, Words

'Lifting,' And Lifted By, Words

'Lifting,' And Lifted By, Words

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/157227125/157580679" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Lifting poetry illustration
Ron Tanovitz

About The Poetry Games
To celebrate the Olympics we invited poets from around the globe to compose original works about athletes and athletics — and asked you to be the judges. Click here to read the winning poem.

Poet Ouyang Yu comes to NPR's Poetry Games representing two continents: Asia, where he was born (in China); and Australia, where he moved in 1991. He is a prolific writer of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, literary translation and criticism in English and Chinese.

Of his poem "Lifting," he writes: "Much as I admire weightlifting heroes or heroines, I can't help reminding myself that, however powerful a weightlifter is, he or she can't lift himself or herself up. The magic of the word is that, when well lifted, it has the power to transform."