first person

I am having the strangest reading experience.

I read Charles Bernstein's recent monumental anthology of criticism, My Way, then his recent anthology of poetry, Republics of Reality, (a valuable, nearly-comprehensive anthology of entire out-of-print books, spanning Bernstein's entire poetry
career).

I found My Way fascinating, important, funny, urgent, dated, challenging, dense, pleasurable, and self-consciously and artfully inconsistent. I am able to read many of my favorite ideas into it. I too am interested in "the (often perverse) relation of public space to art that is aversive to cultural and linguistic norms but nonetheless remains committed to exchange, interaction, communication, and community" ("Preface").

Then I read Richard Kostelanetz's vicious trashing of Charles Bernstein in American Book Review - in which Kostelanetz demonstrates subtlety and restraint only by stopping short of using the word "Hitler" to describe Bernstein.

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