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War poet


How cryptography and poetry are linked
Richard Wilbur Poet
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I want to say something parenthetically about cryptography in relation to my writing. Of course in every poem of any quality there's a certain amount of puzzle interest and there's really a fairly close relationship between an interest in riddles and puzzles and cryptography, and an interest in poetry. If one goes back to Aristotle, what he stresses the... he stresses the importance of surprise and discovery in poetry in the riddle and in the poem, and I know that I was drawn to cryptography from the beginning because I was also drawn in the direction of poetry.

Acclaimed US poet Richard Wilbur (1921-2017) published many books and was twice awarded the Pulitzer Prize. He was less well known for creating a musical version of Voltaire's “Candide” with Bernstein and Hellman which is still produced throughout the world today.

Listeners: David Sofield

David Sofield is the Samuel Williston Professor of English at Amherst College, where he has taught the reading and writing of poetry since 1965. He is the co-editor and a contributor to Under Criticism (1998) and the author of a book of poems, Light Disguise (2003).

Tags: Aristotle

Duration: 1 minute, 1 second

Date story recorded: April 2005

Date story went live: 24 January 2008