invective doggerel & mrs. translations

This section of the reading seemed very much to polarize people.

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__________________, who generally worships my writing, was so offended by the Herbeck rewrites (I guess) that he had to leave the room.  Later on the phone he told me he hated those poems and thought they were “beneath me.”
________________said that those poems were totally “unmediated” and self-indulgent and that “we didn’t want to hear about you; we wanted to hear about the world.”*  I told him that was just dogma.  Later I also thought that the poems were highly mediated**, but OK.
________________said he thinks performing those poems “weakens” me (I wondered later if he might be projecting, if identifying with the vulnerability-&-anger-born-of-betrayal somehow weakened him, the listener?). I told him I disagreed, but also that I didn’t really need to perform them anymore; I just needed to do them in that space, and at this moment. In a way, if I were my husband, I might be flattered by these works, instead of enraged by them.  Their extremity bespeaks the extremity of the love and the trauma of losing it.
Every non-poet I talked to (especially the musicians and composers who had come to hear Bruce) loved it, the whole thing, from soup to nuts.
________________loved it, said I was wild and mean and great.
And the biggest surprise was: ________________loved it.   He told me he thought that was the best reading he’d ever seen me do.  And lots of other nice things.
Later, ________________, who told me she had expected to hate these poems, said she actually found them very entertaining.
None of the _____________________ had one word to say to me about it, so I guess they must have hated it?
This is all perfectly all right with me.  I’m at a place in my artistic development where I find all sorts of responses to be interesting.  I find it especially interesting that the responses are so polarized.  That means to me that what I am doing is interesting, if not exactly “right.”
* ain’t I the world, too?
** re: “mediated”…Yesterday I watched a DVD of the T.A.M.I. show again and was marveling at the ultra-human phenomenon that was James Brown.  Was he mediated? I mean, I think these poems are quite mediated, as I said, but why is mediated necessarily a value?
An observation: there seems to be a relationship between the extent of a man’s paternalism and his inability to tolerate a woman’s rage.  I say this with genuine love for those men who have criticized me and acknowledge that I have heard and receive their critiques, although I may not agree with them.  I also think it’s worthwhile to note that I would never give my unsolicited opinion to these men about their works, at least not in any highly unmediated way, and I believe that reflects on power imbalances that reach back for millennia, and to which in essential ways my entire oeuvre reacts. 
Also please see note above about weakness-in-identification.

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