The end of the end.
Salton Sea is slowly drying up.
Its shore recedes each day, and carcinogens
drained into its waters
will one day be reduced to a powder,
picked up by vengeful winds,
dropped like toxic snow
on those still living near the desiccation.
Salton Sea a tale of man-made place and folly,
of exploitation and abandonment.
Salton Sea once promised the fat of profit,
but sales did not come. Instead, life here limped
and then toppled into disrepair,
punished now by severe climate.
Salton languishes, and the public
cannot be made to care, no matter who or what
dies because of its poison future.
In surrounding little towns like Bombay Beach
there are people who linger.
They live a sort of life in heat and wind,
moving through dead flies and tilapia
that ring the shore of this sea.
People here seem to cling to something.
Perhaps like Salton
they too are simply waiting to die.
Myriad birds, graceful, weightless,
still visit and rest. Their speculative flight
spreads across lost waters.
But they know better. They pass through.
The ancient paradox of death and beauty
defines this sea. Small carcasses
sometimes litter the water,
struggle and agonizing death evident
in the remains. Beauty hides in dark corners.
I photograph the sea's remaining days
as it vanishes. When it is gone,
I wonder will anyone believe its existence,
its story, its lesson. Even viewing my images,
they may still say this place was a lie,
and in some ways they would be right.
But it was true for a time.
For a time, it was true--
this now becoming the sad refrain in the song
of what happens between people and their planet.