A Hazard Of New Fortunes: On Bernstein’s ‘Attack Of The Difficult Poems’

Bernstein recognizes the affect that difficulty first releases — anxiety, reluctance, the deep breath as one gathers resolve to do something difficult, such as read a poem known for its difficulty. His performance includes several masks, switching the impression to a generic Dr. Phil (“Difficult poems are not like this because of something you as readers have done to them. It’s not your fault”) or the ladies glossy advice column…