We’re delighted to have published new collections from Eamon Grennan and Justin Quinn.
Eamon Grennan’s new collection shows once again his powers of close, patient, plainspoken observation. He reveals how any specific detail can glow with the truth of its own unrepeatable self. Set mostly in the landscape of coastal Connemara, these poems can also bring to vivid life a family walk, a painting by Bonnard, a childhood memory, a brief encounter or the sight of a man scything a field. Through the repeated justified-margins format of these poems (each poem’s line width determined by the chosen length of its first line) Grennan aligns accident with design and choice with chance. The book serves to sharpen our own habits of attention, renewing our sense of the often unnoticed worlds around us.
‘I feel ripped open,’ Justin Quinn remarks in one of the poems in his new collection. A man in middle age may be a wreck, but before he turns into dust he may find ways to let the weirdnesses and passions of the world course through him. These poems celebrate intimacy both of rock and of flesh as Quinn riffs through geological time and sexual intensity. In their characteristically adroit formal patterns, they address historical and immediately contemporary situations. Their author talks with ghosts and they talk back. Another poem asks, ‘What will the earth do with us?’ The author sings some answers.