Last week Suzi of Laundry Line Divine suggested we play. She suggested we play Food Labels. And thus we did at 12:30 last Wednesday afternoon. We got wild and creative with stuff in our pantry. It was a challenge to make something as ordinary as food labels into something interesting. But I think we both succeeded.
Then she suggested the next challenge for this week: Rocks.
Shall we photograph rocks in a creative way?
Could we do it?
I am lucky to live along the shore of Lake Superior where some of the planet’s oldest rocks lie on the beaches. Stones of every shape, color and texture gleam up at the beach-walker through the icy water. The stones all are teachers. Each one shares a wave-tossed story. Each one whispers to your soul. You simply have to slow down enough to listen to the murmurings of rocks.
If you’re talking in your mind, thinking of this and that, and what you have to do–you’ll never hear Stone Language. Only if you’re silent do you begin to hear the silent syllables of stones. Really silent.
Walking on stones is an art. You all know that, right? If you don’t pay attention, you walk with jerky steps, trying not to fall. If you breathe deeply and watch your feet and center of balance the stones hold you. If not–be careful. Don’t fall in the lake.
In between the stones rest treasures of plant and feather. Oh, yes, sometimes human garbage as well. Driftwood. Dead birds. Live toads. A galaxy of insects. Slow down! Don’t let your mind lead you along the beach, drawing you back to the Civilized World. Let the feet guide instead. They will stop often and admire the rocks.
Some of us–rock hounds–will gather the silent cool hard creatures in bags to carry home and sit in our flower gardens or by our beds or in our peaceful living rooms. We know that stones enrich our home. We know that stones sing silent rock-songs while we dream at night. We know they keep us grounded and yet connected to our spiritual depths. Stones are the Keepers of Earth-secrets. They lie ready to teach.
We must simply become more silent. Our heartbeats slow. When our hearts beat in rhythm with the stone, then we’ll be taught lessons of steady turning, moving, shaping with eons of ice and flow. Our spirit knows. I remember once, years ago, finding an eagle feather lying on the earth next to a beautiful white stone.
Something inside whispered, “The stone can teach you more than the eagle feather.” I knew it true, but reached for the feather instead, wanting airy flight. These days it’s the deep stone of the earth which shares its teachings and I ken it well.
We must be ready for the teachings of granite and quartz. Minerals grind us into earth’s diamonds as we heed their lessons.
I remember playing with a young girl as a child along the shores of Lake Huron. I was told her parents were poor. She took me down along the beach and we sat on the rocks. She said the rocks were dishes. We pretended to eat on them. I was amazed–never before had I enjoyed playing so much! None of the plastic toy dishes of my childhood had ever seemed as marvelous as those rock plates.
As I left the beach today, climbing under a fallen tree and up a steep hill, I glanced down. There was a hand-penned sign. “Hope”. Later on–another sign read “Faith”. They were propped up by stones.
Simply stones. Perfect props for Faith and Hope…