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Charles Bernstein: Portraits, Series 4


Rod's Postal Poetics, November 19, 2006

Rod Smith
Every time I publish a book I go to Bridge Street Books, in Washington, to do a reading at one of the most amiable and intimate spaces around. And I hang out with Rod, who has made the place a poetry hub. We usually go to a few museums – on this trip we went to the Societé Anonyme at the Phillips and then over to the Smithsonian. Fruitcakes?
(mp4, 29 seconds, 4.7 mb)


Nicole: Another Language,

Nicole Brossard
Nicole came by and we mostly discussed prose poetry, for a class she was going to teach. But then I asked her about the different pronunciations of French in the Americas.
(mp4, 59 seconds, 11.4 mb)


Douglas & the Big Apple (First Bite), December 10, 2006

Douglas Messerli
Douglas grew up in Iowa, where New York was as close as his Broadway musical LPs, which he collected even though he didn’t have a record player. Sun & Moon, and now Green Integer, sales reps meetings bring him to town a couple of times a year. Very often he stays at my mother’s apartment. Those trips always give us a chance to spend an evening together, where we talk of publishing, poetry, theater, but mostly the foibles of our legion of mutual friends, and our own foibles too. We end up laughing, even at the saddest things.
(mp4, 1 min., 16 sec., 5.1 mb)


Peter Middleton, October 16, 2006

Peter Middleton
Peter was on his way back from Creeley Buffalo conference, which I had missed because of the devastating snow storm in Buffalo that weekend. The first time I met with Peter in New York was in the early 1990s. I remember going to the Riverside Park playground and while Emma played in the sandbox we chatted on about his entirely informative book The Inward Gaze: Masculinity & Subjectivity in Modern Culture.
(mp4, 38 seconds, 7.5 mb)


Norman the Baker, January 5, 2007

Norman Fischer
Norman sat out on the bench in front of Pecan on Franklin, just before walking west to the Clocktower to tape Close Listening. We met up with Alan Davies, whose Close Listening shows I was taping right before Norman’s. After the recording session we wandered over to Excellent Dumpling for lunch, where we sat next to Lynne Stewart. I’d just seen Paul Chan’s film about Stewart, in which she talks about poetry and reads from Blake. We were eating in the shadows of the criminal court building in which she had been unjustly sentenced to jail. I was glad to meet her and express my appreciation for her work and concern for the price she might have to pay for defending freedom. Meanwhile, our small band of poets – Alan, Norman, and me – made our way over to the Chelsea to see Norman’s son Noah’s new show.
(mp4, 28 seconds, 5.7 mb)


Tina's House, November 18, 2006

Tina Darragh
We were in a bar somewhere in Baltimore after my i.e. reading with Rod. The bar was noisy and dark but I found a small red alcove to ask Tina about her red housing.
(mp4, 51 seconds, 10 mb)


Video Portraits Home Page

  • Portraits series 1 : Régis Bonvicino, George Lakoff, Heny Hills, Mimi Gross, Loss Pequeño Glazier, Caroline Bergvall
  • Portraits series 2 : Pierre Joris, Wystan Curnow, Levhi Lehto, Robert Grenier, James Sherry, Johanna Drucker
  • Portraits series 3 : Ann Lauterbach, Karen Mac Cormack, Steve McCaffery, Mei-mei Berssenbrugge, Nick Piombino, Richard Tuttle
  • Portraits series 4 : Rod Smith, Nicole Brossard, Douglas Messerli, Peter Middleton, Norman Fischer, Tina Darragh
  • Portraits series 5 : Myung Mi Kim, Charles Alexander, Alan Davies, P. Inman, Phong Bui, Bob Perelman
  • Portraits series 6 :Kenneth Goldsmith, John Yau, Peter Gizzi,  Dubravka Djuric,  Elizabeth Willis, Tan Lin
  • Portraits series 7 : John Ashbery, Rae Armantrout, Emma Bee Bernstein, Susan Howe, Sigmund Laufer
  • Portraits series 8: Maggie O'Sullivan, Christian Bök, Darren Wershler, Tonya Foster, Marty Ehrlich & Erica Hunt, Lev Rubinstein
  • Portraits series 9: David Antin, Ted Greenwald, Jerome Rothenberg, Diane Rothenberg, Ron Silliman, Joel Kuszai
  • Portraits series 10: Peter Gizzi, Elizabeth Willis, John Tranter, Bruce Andrews, Cecilia Vicuña, Tom Raworth
  • Portraits page 11: Ben Yarmolinsky, Hank Lazer, Marjorie Perloff, Alan Loney, Claude Royet-Journoud, Li Zhimin
  • Portraits page 12: Arkadii Dragomoschenko, Susan Howe, Ernie Gehr

Thanks for Steve McLaughlin for technical and design assistance. These video recordings are being made available for noncommercial and educational use only. All rights to this recorded material belong to the artist. ©2006-2012 Charles Bernstein. Used with permission of Charles Bernstein. Distributed by PennSound.