Charles Bernstein © Emma Bee Bernstein
The work of radical modernist Charles Bernstein (b. 1950 in New York) needs a slanted shelf in the bookcase of international contemporary poetry. As the guiding spirit of experimental poetry and reviver of the American long poem, Bernstein is at the same time icon and iconoclast. He breaks the painted images that he himself creates in his poems. His atonal, polyvalent texts are like the welded pastry containing frog-filled chocolates in one of his poems.
Bernstein is also well-known as the editor of L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E Magazine (1978–1981), which sparked off much vital discourse and promoted the theories of experimental literature like no other, and is still a vade mecum for all avant-garde writers, opening up more than one way for poetry into a possible future.
Rough Trades, Sun & Moon Press 1991
Dark City, Sun & Moon Press 1994
Republics of Reality: 1975–1995, Sun & Moon Press 2000
With Strings, University of Chicago Press 2001
Girly Man, University of Chicago Press 2006
All the Whiskey in Heaven, Farrar, Straus, and Giroux 2010
Recalculating, University of Chicago Press 2013