Pattering patterning | this morning Decatur; last week, NYC
There’s a pattering, the patterning of sound, this morning. I’m writing about sound, I suppose, because it’s pure black, this morning. You can’t see anything, out there — it’s all blackened sound.
But all morning, since sometime past midnight, it’s been raining. Here, that’s meaningful. The island house is designed as a kind of echo chamber for sound. The overhanging galvanized structure captures sound from above, and scoops it up from the waterline shore below. It focuses the sound in — raindrops, wind, coastal trickling, shore stones crashing in the waves, it’s all brought in.
I was in NYC yesterday morning.
I was in the city, as well, for the phenomenal (literally) raining of later this past week, 8.8.07, when the tornado struck Brooklyn (the first in 118 years — both my Dad and I’d wished to have actually seen that…scene). The subways flooded out, transportation chaos emerged, and grand pools greeted corner leapers at the intersections. There were, as well, the warning spatter patterns of fast-running cars splashing explosions on the sidewalks, racing by. It only takes this happening to you once to realize the danger of walking too close to the street and having a puddle exploded on you, a car rushing by…
The marked mine fields of the great arcing water splatters on the concrete walk will awaken you to that. Once, and hopefully you’ll stand warned.
Now, thinking of the sound, and the delicate texture of this morning’s call of rain is cautiously tentative, by comparison to that; there’s no breeze, and it comes quietly, pattering, vertically from the darkening skies.
5.30am, the view North, NYC’s Central Park.
Last week, however, was a wholly different view. Lightning cast great jags on Central Park, just north of me — at the New York Athletic Club. And it was so warm grey dark, this appeared only as lightening exposures — you couldn’t see anything else — and that you could really see only across to the adjoining buildings, in distinguishing anything. And what you could see there, was remarkable. It was, literally, like the buildings had been converted into great water sculptures. Like rivers were flowing down the side of the masonry.
Amidst the storm 5am.
Fountains had been set, overnight, to cascade down the buildings. The rainstorm water flow, striking the storey to storey windowsills, was splashing like some ill-planned water installation, gone awry — water came down with such force that it smacked outside the sills and exploded off the buildings in continuous arcs. Of course I had the windows wide open, to bring in the storm, and went to the roof tops of the New York Athletic Club to see more. Drenching, in seconds. Fresh from the river, my clothes soaked.
Now being here, the delicacy, versus the overwhelming gushing of earlier in the week, there’s no comparison of meaning.
From the roof of the NYAC, later morning — 6am.
Good to watch, and listen to, the weather.
Meanwhile, a great moth in the studio batters itself, barely avoiding the candles, lit here. I feel like that traveler, sometimes, arching around the light. At least I’m there, looking at it…
wishing well | tsg | decatur island