"So what if I left language by the pier. Metaphor's a raft," declares Andrew DuBois as he leads readers through a fractured past and present -- from "slummy memories of streets" to a "a charnelhouse (?) of possible clowns" -- defamiliarizing, critiquing, and satirizing a wide range of conversational forms in the style of Wallace Stevens and Michael Palmer. Yet, as "lives at time degenerate into victory competitions," and the poet alternates between searching for an escape from the mundane and accepting that "merely being there together is a dull catastrophe," we recognize that a formally wry, almost flippant, voice has become caught in language's web. The surfaces of the poems begin to feel like thin ice, a brittle coating over which we skate for as long as it lasts. Danger lurks here: the poet must play the puppet, not the puppeteer and we must surrender, body and soul, into language as element.