Tennyson poem chosen for Olympics


    4 March 2011
    Last updated at 14:56 ET

    A line from an Alfred Tennyson poem has been chosen to inspire athletes taking part in the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

    “To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield”, from Ulysses, will be engraved as a permanent installation in the centre of the Olympic Village.

    The public was invited to suggest inspiring poetry representing the values of the Olympic Games last year.

    Four other poems will also feature around the complex.

    The selections were chosen by a panel which included Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, author Sebastian Faulks, poet Daljit Nagra and broadcasters Clare Balding and John Inverdale.

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    Reasons for nominating the Tennyson line emphasised its universal appeal including comments such as “it sums up the courage needed to live life to the full”.

    Nagra liked it because it is “a clarion call to the best parts of our searching inquiring selves that is just as suited to a gold medal winner as it is to the ordinary worker in their daily round”.

    Lines from Robert Browing, Langston Hughes, Denise Levertov and Sean O’Brien poems were also selected from the public nominations.

    The Tennyson installation will be seen daily by the athletes and officials living and working in the Olympic Village during the 2012 Games.

    After the Games, the wall will remain after the Village is converted into new housing.

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    Tennyson poem chosen for Olympics