LETTERS TO THE WATER
“Letters to the Water” was created in light of the increasing number of threats to our water supply, including the one million gallons of mine wastewater that breached a wall at the Gold King Mine near Silverton, CO in the summer of 2015 and made its way along the San Juan River impacting the Navajo Nation, hundreds of farmers, and the entire local ecosystem. While sitting in the brook at the center of the park, I read and reread over 30 letters of appreciation for and to water, which I had collected from friends and strangers in the weeks preceding the event.
One letter read in part: “I offer my gratitude to the water here—with intentions grounded in respect for the authority and implacable force that water IS without even trying. Through communion with this water I am restored, washed clean to begin again.” Another read: “My Celtic soul holds centuries of veneration for you. Your mysterious aura draws me in a spiritual wonderment so I am calmest and happiest when near you. It is tragic how mankind does not respect and celebrate you this way, in this day in age. We are trying to control, deplete, and poison you. I am profoundly sorry.” And a a third read: “Chère eau, Je t’aime. Je t’aime parce que tu es mon symbole de résistance. Tu t’infiltres, tu t’enrages, tu te calmes, tu résistes, tu aspires, tu propulses, tu nourris, tu abreuves, tu nettoies, tu transportes, tu protèges, tu coules, tu tombes et tu t’élèves. Tu es puissante et indomptable, je t’aime.”
I consider this work an extension of my mindfulness meditation practice and part of a larger body of work that explores how city-dwellers, including myself, may be re-enabled as responsible members of the living world by connecting more consciously with nature.