Sample the Book
by Leila Philip and Garth Evans
Poetry / Art
Hardcover/ 60 pages
New Rivers Press
Minnesota State University Moorhead
Publication date: November 9, 2015
In 2012, Leila Philip and Garth Evans set out to challenge themselves as artists. Philip, an award-winning memoirist, wrote poems. Evans, an internationally renowned sculptor, made watercolors. Water Rising tells the story of this remarkable collaboration. Philip’s realist poems—about nature, beauty, love, and loss, set amongst Evans’ abstract, deeply hued, layered watercolors, create a book which is more than just a gorgeous read and a visual feast. What emerges in this book is a stunning and original collaboration, which, as Worcester Art Museum Director, Matthias Waschek, points out in his introduction, extends how we think about the relationship between painting and poetry. The title poem, “Water Rising,” was a finalist for the 2015 Pushcart Prize in literature.
The mission of Water Rising is to generate funds to support environmental stewardship. At its core, Water Rising celebrates our human need to connect to place.
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Praise for Water Rising
“Evans and Philip teach us how to see a place anew, as if ‘a secret were
breaking open.’ And once we know that secret… nothing will ever be the same
—Chris Merrill, The Trees of the Doves
“Things happen. The poems and paintings both tell us. How and why are
mysteries and should remain so . . . open-minded souls at their careful work.”
—Baren Wormser, Poet Laureate of Maine, 2000 – 06
“Both forms move deftly between their own inner and outer dimensions and
together maintain a sustained and passionately engaged conversation.”
—Lia Purpura, On Looking
“A stunning and surprising marriage of true minds.”
—Michael Collier, The Ledge
“The paintings and poems of Water Rising celebrate our insistence that, in the
face of much darkness, we will continue to live along the shores of light and great
—David St. John, Study of the World’s Body
“Its poems and watercolors harmonize like wild singers in a healthy natural
landscape . . . music, the likes of which has not quite been heard before . . . the
book itself is a work of art . . . it is truly a small miracle.
—Michael Hettich, Systems of Vanishing