Clive Wilmer teaches at the University of Cambridge, where he is Emeritus Fellow in English at Sidney Sussex College and an Affiliated Lecturer in the Faculty of English. He is also an Honorary Fellow of Anglia Ruskin University. He has published six volumes of poetry, mostly with Carcanet Press, which in 2012 produced his New and Collected Poems. Collections of his poems has been published in Hungarian (2002) and in Spanish (2011); individual poems have been translated into Bulgarian, Italian and Swedish. In 2009 he was appointed Master of the Guild of St George, the charity created by John Ruskin. He has written and lectured extensively on the work of Ruskin and certain of his followers. In particular, he has edited the Penguin editions of Ruskin’s Unto this Last and Other Writings and William Morris’s News from Nowhere and Other Writings, as well Dante Gabriel Rossetti: Selected Poems and Translations for Carcanet.
In 1985 he conceived and helped to plan the Ezra Pound centenary exhibition, Pound’s Artists at the Tate Gallery, London, and Kettle’s Yard Gallery, Cambridge. His involvement as a critic in the work of certain contemporary poets has led to his editing one volume of Thom Gunn’s prose and two of Donald Davie’s. He is now editing an annotated Selected Poems of Thom Gunn for Faber and Faber. With a fellow Cambridge scholar Charles Moseley, he has edited the anthology Cambridge Observed (1998).
In collaboration with the Hungarian poet George Gömöri, he has translated work by some twenty Hungarian poets into English. They have published two volumes by György Petri, the second of which, Eternal Monday: Selected Poems, was shortlisted for the Weidenfeld translation prize in 1999. Their selection of Miklós Radnóti’s poetry, Forced March (1979), has been republished in a revised and enlarged edition (2003). A volume of George Gomori’s own poetry, Polishing October, was published in 2008, and in 2011 Passio: Fourteen Poems by János Pilinszky. In 1998 Clive Wilmer was awarded the Endre Ady Memorial Medal for Translation by the PEN Club in Budapest, and in 2005 a medal for translators, Pro Cultura Hungarica, by the Hungarian Ministry of Culture.
From 1986 to 1990, he was an editor of the magazine Numbers, which he founded with three colleagues. From 1989 to 1992 he presented the BBC Radio 3 programme Poet of the Month; the transcripts of his interviews were collected in the book Poets Talking (1994). He is a frequent contributor — as poet, essayist and reviewer – to a variety of periodicals, notably the Times Literary Supplement, The London Magazine and PN Review.