No river can return to its source, yet all rivers must have a beginning.
(American Indian proverb)
The Romans realized, as have every civilized people since, that living in cities is impossible if the water supply is not reliably clean and fresh.
(Frank & Francis Chapelle, The Hidden Sea: Ground Water, Springs and Wells
Water, water everywhere, Nor any drop to drink.
(Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834), The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
We never know the worth of water till the well is dry.
(Thomas Fuller, Gnomologia
In every glass of water we drink, some of the water has already passed through fishes, trees, bacteria, worms in the soil, and many other organisms, including people...Living systems cleanse water and make it fit, among other things, for human consumption.
(Elliot A. Norse, in R.J. Hoage, ed., Animal Extinctions
We used to think that energy and water would be the critical issues for the next century. Now we think water will be the critical issue.
(Mostafa Tolba of Egypt, former head of the United Nations Environment Programme)
Filthy water cannot be washed.
We're all downstream.
(Ecologist's motto adopted by Margaret & Jim Drescher, Windhorse Farm, Nova Scotia)
The frog does not drink up the pond in which he lives.
(American Indian proverb quoted in Water Wasteland
by David Zwick & Marcy Benstock, 1971)