Out of Sight: New and Selected Poems

Out of Sight selects from seven of Grennan's collections and includes thirty new poems. It is easy to get lost in Grennan's intensely visual work, which describes emotion and scenery with uncompromisingly exact and beautiful language. This poetry is elemental, but its scope never becomes so epic that it foregoes intimacy. Phrases open out into the movement of the animal world, shift to the weather, and then home in on the textures of everyday materials and interactions, often stirring all five senses. From one of the new poems, "The Day That’s in It," Grennan writes:

plush, full-mouthed, yellowgreen chunks
of avocado; a greywhite gull, cloud-gobbled,
vanishing; invisible windbreath nibbling at
sycamore leaves that shy this way, that; a few
itinerant bees in and out of the fuchsias; wind-
tipped sally leaves shifting green to silver grey

This book review originally appeared in American Poets, fall 2010, issue 39.