SNIPPETS AND BLURBS

 

 

SIMILITUDE
 

 

"Grant Hier's poetry speaks the truth. Grant Hier is Mozart, Jackson Pollack, and Gary Snyder all at once. Hier's work moves. He's the best poet working today."  — John Brantingham | Poet Laureate of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

 

"Hier’s deceptively accessible collection brings us a memorable mingling of nature, bodies, and the human spirit. On every page, the reader nods along to the poetry’s music and to the private rhythm of their own recognition."   — Genevieve Scott | author of Catch My Drift

 

"Grant Hier is a poet who looks for the cosmic in the everyday, the nebula in the coffee cup, and in Similitude he finds it. A radiant exploration of the thingness of the world. I really love this book."   — Rufi Thorpe | Girls From Corona Del Mar; Dear Fang, With Love; Violin Face 



 

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN
 

"Grant Hier's writing is about surrender. Surrender to the word, allowing it to live, to lead, to guide. Mr. Hier masterly documents that journey."   — Louie Pérez | Los Lobos songwriter, guitarist, percussionist, singer; painter, illustrator, sculptor, designer; author of Good Morning, Aztlán


 

"The book is full of intelligent humor and word play. Hier pulls from mathematics, physics, music, the natural world in all of its manifestations, and from the mysteries of the human heart to create a poetry of wonder.   — Donna Hilbert | author of numerous books of poetry, fiction and essays


 

Grant Hier’s work is artistry, introspection, and music."   — John Brantingham | author of more than a dozen books of poetry and fiction

 


 

UNTENDED GARDEN
 


"The rhythms are exquisite... it takes your breath away (it did mine).... Hier recalls fellow Californian poet Robinson Jeffers, particularly Jeffers’ posthumously published The Beginning and the End  (Hier is a Jeffers’ scholar).  Hier also shares with Jeffers the theme of (ideal) human connectedness to the natural world and its inheritance."   — The Rumpus
 

"This is a poetry that honors the mystery and beauty of daily life and sanctifies the ground on which we live."   — Donna Hilbert | Gravity: New & Selected Poems  
 

 

"Untended Garden allowed me to re-see the world that’s been in front of me my whole life. That’s the beauty of a collection like his. It moves us beyond the everyday and the common. It returns the extraordinary in our lives that we’ve become blind to."   — The East Jasmine Review

"Untended Garden by Grant Hier is a questing meditation, a searching in language and experience for a sense of self in place and time, a journey through the long history of inheritance in body and song , a definition of beginning, a recognition of finality. Questions abound within the poetry. "Could it be that all is present, that everywhere / is contained in where we are?"  Contemplation is a hallmark and a pleasure in this book. — Pattiann Rogers | author of numerous poetry books; winner of dozens of poetry prizes and fellowships
 

"A recommended read for fans of thinking poetry."   — Michael Stephan Oates | Wade In The Water: A novel of the great Johnstown flood; The Stones in the Field
 

"This is a 'Song of Myself' epic , written over the course of twenty years, and similarly ambitious. It sets its scope from the Big Bang to now, containing multitudes, one might say. It is for the ages, both past and future. A deep, penetrating, scintillating, readable exploration of personal, familial, and communal history. The first time I read this poem, I knew it was destined to become precisely such a comprehensive, prestigious, ground-breaking, major publication as Untended Garden. Here is a poet of high standing, with a superior control of language, observational awareness, willingness to probe one’s own depths, a mastery of both traditional and innovative forms, and a first-rate intellectual acuity."   — Gerald Locklin | author of more than 100 volumes of poetry, fiction, and literary essays
 

 

"Grant Hier’s Untended Garden is a poem that should be chanted by firelight at the entrance to a cave. It is a journey of self-discovery, shifting back and forth in time, propelled by rhythms of creation and sensations of the natural world. It is a well-wrought psychic quest for a life rooted in the contemporary while still in ancient sympathy with the earth. Read this book; then join me in saying, 'Bravo!'"   — Charles Harper Webb  |  author of numerous poetry books; winner of dozens of poetry prizes and fellowships
 

 

"Untended Garden is an absolutely brilliant exploration of the history and culture of Los Angeles. Read it! It is epic poetry written for the modern world."   — John Brantingham | editor of LA Fiction Anthology; director of the creative writing program at Mt. San Antonio College
 

"In one of my favorite sections, the kid from Anaheim goes on a walkabout, through the neighborhood and also the stacked and scattered touchstone available in the period, late Sixties, exploring his own capacity for awareness and engagement with getting lost. He discovers a storm drain, for us, now, an obvious conduit of precious and contentious water but also, of course, the subconscious. Reverie and panic and dream ensue, as is possible when you’re a special, blessed, sensitive kid. A vision, a la Whitman or Blake, in a cement culvert! — Andrew Tonkovich | author and editor of Santa Monica Review
 

"Hier, like Whitman, works on a canvas that is both grand and pulsingly specific. As the milky way and the roots of civilization flow through the book's three sections, the poet lights down constantly on images of the moment: fruit falling from the vine, birds twittering, classical music playing two rooms down as the narrator bathes in his tub. Fittingly, the central metaphor of “Untended Garden” comes down to its title — the home garden, our attempt at order in the face of transicence. Describing his narrator after a hard day with the spade, Hier writes,   “Tonight I will lie with the ache / of today’s futile gardening / still thrumming in my limbs.” It may be futile, but we ache for it regardless. In our brief time, in our small place, that is how we live. Los Angeles Times
 

"...urgently relevant to poetry making, but also history making, especially to those of us living in what is now Los Angeles or Orange Counties — ‘The Southland…’  In some ways [this] book is a guide book to this region...  Think (why not?) Song of  Myself, but next door to Disneyland and the Santa Ana River, with the legacy of native California dancing and speaking throughout…  This book is bound to become a small classic of the experience of growing up in Southern California."   — Bibliocracy Radio
 

"Spectacular poetical journey connecting us to ancestral-earth-cosmic roots & their continuum as evolving human beings today. Untended Garden runs deep: mountains rivers valleys native peoples rising from oceans. Kudos & sincere gratitude for this poem, this work of art. A Masterpiece."   — Morgan Zo Callahan | editor, educator, community organizer, social worker; author of Intimate Meanderings, Bamboo Bending, Red Buddhist Envelope


"Gorgeously prosaic. Completely satisfying. Favorably compared to writing by DJ Waldie, Mike Davis, Susan Suntree. This prize [Prize Americana] means a lot to any poet, but perhaps even more to Hier, (pronounced "higher") whose ambitious if completely satisfying poem seems in its Whitmanic style pretty darn unlikely for a local boy from Anaheim, California, Orange County, USA of all places. But, yes, Hier has completed the home stretch, creating a literary document which will take its place alongside other So Cal recollections, memoirs, reminiscences of the region, if perhaps done more artfully than the prose writers but with the same eye for accuracy and fairness, with documents and footnotes and cross-referencing; something, as they say, for everybody..."   — OC Weekly
 

"By shedding light on the often-overlooked, by celebrating the diversity of all life forms that have existed in this same place before us, and that co-exist with us and connect us all as vital parts of the shared continuum, Untended Garden proves itself to be an outstanding contribution to American literature."   Nomination statement for the American Book Award