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Andrew DuBois (CA)

All the People Are Pregnant

All the People Are Pregnant

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"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.

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Goose Lane Editionsicehouse poetry


Andrew DuBois is the author of three previous books, including Ashbery’s Forms of Attention and Start to Figure: Fugitive Essays, Selected Reviews, a collection that includes reviews of over 200 contemporary poets. He also co-edited The Anthology of Rap, named a Top Ten Book of the year by New York Magazine and The Village Voice. He is a member of the University of Toronto’s English department and divides his time between Toronto and Carbonear, Newfoundland.

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