November 24, 2016

Erasing Tracks

By Molly Zimmer
Big Bend State Park, TX
October 23, 2016

I found it to be very strange, and also very important that we were staying in the Aranosa Campground in Big Bend State Park of Texas. It is located right next to the Rio Grande River, concluding our journey of seeing the beginning of the river in Headwaters, Creede, Colorado to where it becomes a border with the United States and Texas.

I began to wonder about if anybody had crossed where our campground was, and what would I do if I encountered somebody crossing the river?

How do I know how many people have crossed here? Would they cover their tracks? What kinds of materials would they try to conceal their steps with? How is the river one form of erasure? What kind of tool could I create to demonstrate people dreams of crossing unseen?

I ended up creating a broom that acts as an eraser- smoothing out the sand on the road. Utilizing the invasive grass species that grows along the river, I fashioned this broom to erase my steps, but no matter what tools I made another type of mark was always left. A trail of the distance I had traveled was imprinted into the sand.

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