Catholic Culture Resources
Catholic Culture Resources

133—Think Like a Poet—Ryan Wilson

By Catholic Culture Podcast ( bio - articles - email ) | May 25, 2022 | In The Catholic Culture Podcast

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In a wide-ranging and erudite interview, poet and translator Ryan Wilson joins the podcast to discuss how the poet makes use of the classical virtue of xenia or hospitality, what poets can learn from the work of translation, the “romantic turn” (inner vision) and the “classical turn” (communication/craft) in poetry, the great Latin poet Horace, and more. Ryan performs, in his dynamic style, classic poems by Horace and others, as well as his own poems.

Ryan Wilson is an adjunct professor of English at the Catholic University of America, editor of the journal Literary Matters, and teaches poetry as a visiting professor in the creative writing MFA program at the University of St. Thomas in Houston. He is the author of three books: The Stranger World, a collection of original poems; How to Think Like a Poet; and Proteus Bound: Selected Translations, 2008-2020.


0:00—Proteus Bound

13:49—Hospitality as fundamental principle of community, thought, and poetry

28:35—The romantic turn and the classical turn

46:52—Ryan Wilson, “Xenia”

54:09—Proteus, Hermes, and Orpheus as figures of the poet

1:04:05—Translation as training for the poet

1:18:17—The Latin poetry of Horace

2:08:25—Charles Baudelaire, “The Voice”

2:20:30—How Ryan relates as a Catholic to classical literature

2:27:40—Ryan Wilson, “Philoctetes, Long Afterward”


Proteus Bound: Selected Translations, 2008-2020

How to Think Like a Poet

The Stranger World

Literary Matters

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Thomas V. Mirus is Director of Podcasts for, hosts The Catholic Culture Podcast, and co-hosts Criteria: The Catholic Film Podcast. See full bio.

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