October 27, 2016

Use Your Words

By Hollis Moore
Wild Rivers
October 4, 2016


I have never been a big talker. When I was young my mother would constantly say to me, “use your words”! At Wild Rivers I found myself asking the Rio Grande to “use your words”. I have so many questions for the river and surely the Rio Grande surely has something to say to us.

As a meager attempt to read the river I decided to make an alphabet of sticks to be tossed into the Rio Grande; hoping and wishing that the river would spell words out to reveal some secret knowledge.  Turns out the Rio doesn’t like to be told to “use your words” either. The stick letters I formed were swept away and jumbled into a gibberish medley. Unless I can decode these messages into something I understand, I will need to find a different approach to reading the river.

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an O made with Willow

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RPLoHIg floating down the Rio Grande, made with dried Rabbit Bush stems

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HQk floating floating down the Rio Grande

In the meantime, I asked my Land Arts cohorts to write down in one word or two something they would like to say to the river. Our visiting artist, Ruth Le Gear, asked me to spell out “Love and Gratitude”. These are the healing words that artist Masaru Emoto uses to speak to water in order for it to form into crystals. I hope that someday I can ask the Rio Grande what it thinks of Love.




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