I’ve always enjoyed poet Jem Rolls, but this is the freshest show I’ve seen from him in years. Some of the pieces are hilarious, including the opener, which is about how his performance was so bad one night that the zombie-fied crowd fled to a place called Head-Smashed-In Audience Jump. My favourite is a poem about the struggle between a writer and language. It imagines a kind of class warfare that ends badly and includes the line: “Most of the words go out and get jobs in banks and sometimes wonder about what might have been.” Rolls is blessedly unafraid of politics, calling out England’s contribution to the worldwide culture of military violence, for instance. And theatrically, he’s a dynamo: “I have been a large drop of sweat with a human inside it.” For a good time, call Jem.
At Studio 1398 on September 6 (6:30 p.m.), 8 (7:55 p.m.), 9 (7:45 p.m.), 11 (5 p.m.), 13 (1:15 p.m.), and 14 (7:50 p.m.)