“Yankee” Rhymes with “Bernanke”

Roger Angell '42 resumes writing his light name-dropping, year-end verse, "Greetings, Friends!"

After a decade-long hiatus, Roger Angell '42 has resumed writing the amusing year-in-review poem, "Greetings, Friends!" for The New Yorker. In a charming profile, New York Times reporter Dwight Garner recalls Angell's previous work (he wrote the verse annually from 1976 to 1998), the challenges he now faces (who is Sergey Brin? who knew that "the model Heidi Klum's name rhymes not with 'rum' but with 'room'"?)

Garner quotes New Yorker editor David Remnick (a Princetonian) to the effect that he was "particularly pleased that Mr. Angell managed to rhyme 'Mo (the doughty Yankee)' and 'Ben Bernanke.' 'Let's see T. S. Eliot try that,' Mr. Remnick said."

And Garner gives the last word to that other humorous versifier, (Yalie) Calvin Trillin, also a long-time New Yorker staff member and now self-styled "deadline poet" on matters political for The Nation. "Mr. Trillin called Mr. Angell's annual series of rhymes 'a nice tradition.' He added: 'It was very shrewd of Roger to get his poem done before Rod Blagojevich had his spot of bother.'"

See Angell's previous comment on race and Harvard, in the context of Barack Obama's election as president, and an excerpt from his memoir.

Ben S. Bernanke '75 is chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; he was Harvard's Class Day speaker last June.



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