Water carries not just minerals and particles and viruses and bacteria; it carries blessings and hexes as well. It transmits light but in such a way as to make clear your own influences and expectations.

Consider: If you look down in a swimming pool at your legs, you do not see them where you expect. You’re used to the way air carries light, but water makes it arrive at other angles. They’re not lies; they’re just differences in the refractive index, the same thing that allows me (and many of you) to see more clearly thanks to curved glass having similar effects.

Consider: If you walk into a cool mist on a hot day it will refresh you. But if someone near you in a public place sneezes, the aerosol produced – just another mist, and a smaller one – can carry something to you that will make you sick.

I am not here to cast aspersions on the dispersion of water droplets. That would be redundant, since every aspersion is a spray, a spatter, or a mist opportunity. Aspersion, noun, comes from asperse, verb, also seen as asperge, from Latin ad ‘to’ plus spargere ‘sprinkle’. A synonym used by Oxford and Webster is bespatter– but typically with intent: a priest may asperse you with holy water, spraying blessings on you with a brass aspergillium or perhaps a moist branch; an enemy or frenemy may cast aspersions on your character or aspirations, spattering you with metaphoric mud (dirty water).

Look at this picture, taken of a fountain on a breezy day. The park it’s in is popular because it is blessed with this dog-themed three-tiered asperger. Unlike public fountains of old, it supplies no household water for drinking or washing; it just glitters water on its surroundings without stopping or discriminating. I held up my camera and the lens received droplets. And those droplets refracted light, making little lenses on the surface of the lens, and those revealed what you would othewise have missed: hexes.

Why hexes? The hexagons you see are due not to the water but to the lens – the aperture in it, the diaphragm (or iris), has six blades that cut off light. That is what I brought to it: with my receptivity to light, a restriction of the light received. The aspersions show me hexes, but they are my hexes. I am hexing myself, and the water is just making it clear by being slightly less clear. As with all aspersions, the spatters just water what’s already there.

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