Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Light the Lights, Know the Waters

The lights are on at Copper Falls in Scottsdale

Part 3 of 3
Part 1 We are Strangers When We Fall
Part 2 So Soon a Patina Dulls the Light

The lights component of this new public art in Scottsdale were recently activated. In the early evening, they are bright enough to catch the passing eye on Scottsdale Road nearby, and, for the fortunate one stopped at the light in just the right position, broadcast tranquility of falling, splashing water toward the rushing crowd and roaring wheels.

We light lights. This idiom passes without a second glance. But do we water waters? In this instance we do, by diverting them, channeling them, regulating them downwards through carefully sized and positioned rectangles so that they drop just so in front of the lights onto copper bowls, and from there to rejoin the flowing canal below. 

First add copper, then falling water, then point-shards of light

I'm telling you: a cold, clear winter night bike ride when all is quiet will be ideal for viewing and listening here

A group of pals fresh from happy hour carouse past me without a second glance at me or Copper Falls. Their slurred, tough, jostling words momentarily cover up the sound of falling water; their swerving steps distract my gaze from the shimmering white point-shards. Soon as they are gone, though, I can hear the falling water again, and watch it as the nearest bowl vibrates beneath the drops ever so slightly. 

The copper bowls, the sounds, the falling droplets in the light, waters I want to know you. The oceanic feeling far from any ocean that validates itself. I entertain the notion that if I sit her long enough, and if it's quiet enough, and if I calm my thoughts sufficiently, and center my attention effectively enough, I might actually come to know these waters. Hello, waters. The grace of the falling water, its even, relentless, peaceful consistency, I would melt these with my riding, I would make an amalgam from the stuff of point-shard lit droplets cascading on copper with the round circular pedaling of my steel bicycle. Tonight I make myself of that, and disappear.


  1. I think that functioning public art that doesn't involve cows, Confederates, or dancing fountains is frowned on in Texas.

    1. Dancing cow fountains would make me want to visit.


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