House on Water: House in Air is the New and Selected Poems from much admired US poet Fred Marchant. It contains a generous selection of work from both Tipping Point and Full Moon Boat, along with over twenty-five new poems and translations.
I love the luminous, tough integrity that distinguishes these poems as they move buoyant and perfectly balanced between their given and chosen worlds. —Eamon Grennan
One of the “new poems” from this book published in Ireland in 2002 by Dedalus Press. It is not in any of my other books, and is presented here with some slight subsequent revision:
There will be no more description,
no new moons with unnamed star
underneath, no implicit, reddening sun
on its way to see us again.
I will ask them to hold back
awhile, to be more skeptical,
and see if if we can appreciate
the uncertain, systemic balance,
the poise and capacity of being
to burn at such distances that
those eager to witness will declare
what they have seen is the light.
The rest of this, which is mostly dark
and descriptive, I keep trying to erase.
Cover art by Tony O’Malley (1913-2003).
This work consists of a pencil drawing of what we might glimpse through a window, though whether the gaze is outward to the world or inward to the psyche remains meaningfully ambiguous. It is also interesting to wonder if we are looking at something or if something beyond the frame is looking in at us. I think the image works in all these ways, and thus is a window in the house of the imagination, that is to say, on water and in air. The drawing is owned by the Irish poet John F. Deane, a lifelong friend of Tony O’Malley, and the founding director of Dedalus Press in Dublin, the publisher of this book.
Tony O’Malley was born in County Kilkenny, Ireland, in 1913. A self-taught artist, he sketched and painted for pleasure from an early time, but it wasn’t until the 1940s when a long battle with tuberculosis disrupted his life and job as a bank official, that he began painting seriously, and in 1951 he began exhibiting his work in public. As a painter, O’Malley was drawn to abstraction because he believed it permitted greater self-expression. His modern landscapes are noted for their use of colour and texture as well as an inherent spirituality. At his death in 2003, he was considered to be one of the leading exponents of modern Irish painting.
–The above information gleaned and condensed from the A-Z of Irish Art website.