(1) Water created life the way it creates creeks or springs. It did this, I think, so it could get into places it could not otherwise reach, so that I would act as a vehicle carrying it into the desert. As living beings, we consider ourselves to be independent with our fingers, arms, and voices. Unlike alpine creeks, we are not all tied together so we might imagine that we each behave with free will. We can tie our own shoelaces and write poetry. But especially as I drink the last of my water, I believe that we are subjects of the planet’s hydrologic process, too proud to write ourselves into textbooks along with clouds, rivers, and morning dew. When I walk cross-country, I am nothing but the beast carrying water to its next stop.

-- Craig Childs

(2) Millions have lived without love.
No one has lived without water.

-- Turkish businessman

(3) What I am beginning to sense is that the closest we can come to understanding the land without actually walking and climbing it is oddly enough, not through the science of measurement, through cartography, but through art, whether it is Chinese landscape painting or the immense sculptures of Michael Heizer. But though the former uses clouds, atmospheric fading, and progressively overlaid outlines of topology to evoke a psychological distance parallel to that actually in the mountians, thus bringing forth the awe-full nature of large empty space, the latter establishes the bedrock geometry underlying cognition.

-- William Fox

(4) Wherever there is water, life can become active in the material world; where there is no water this possibility ceases. Water is essentially the element of life, wherever possible it wrests life from death. It is everywhere a mediator between contrasts, which grow sharper where it is absent. Thus is brings together elements hostile to one another, constantly creating something new out of them. It dissolves what is solid, rendering it back to life.

-- Theodore Schwenk

(5) We are so happy when we do what is almost superfluous but fail to do precisely what is almost necessary.

-- Kafka

(6) Although the desert is not a blank slate, it’s empty enough in comparison to why we are used to that we’re prone to transform it in our imagination into a literal void that happily receives our mythic inventions, which range from the Victorian and the Lone Ranger to the space operas that have evolved from those stories, such as Star Wars.

-- William Fox

(7) We are not as ephemeral as clouds. We cannot dissipate at the first downtrend in humidity, then expect to re-form elsewhere so we have developed legs to walk us to the shade and hands with which we can construct faucets and swimming pools. Like any stage of the hydrologic process we have our own pecularities, our organs make us nothing more than water pools or springs of bizarre shape, filled with pulsing tubes and chambers.

-- Criag Childs

(8) Human History becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.

-- H.G. Wells

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