Welcome to 21st-century po-biz, just like the earlier version. Check out Ron Silliman's weekend news clips. Ange Mlinko's rathery gushy Ashbery review (in The Nation) gets labeled "great". Troy Jollimore's measured Ashbery review (in SF Chronicle) gets labeled "quietist".
O Ashbery. The Mlinko review is indeed wide-ranging and intelligent; but the Jollimore one is good too.
A. Mlinko writes : "The Ashbery poem isn't grounded in reportage or fact. And that is at least one of his great discoveries, if not his greatest: the ideal poetry for the Information Age is a poetry of no information." This is very close to Paul Fry's theory of the "ostensive" ground of lyric poetry : it exists outside of, or before, reference and meaning.
Actually, I don't feel that the ideal poetry for the Information Age is a poetry of no information. Just personal taste, I guess. For me Ashbery represents one of the larger sacred buffaloes in the vast constellation of American confusion.