About a week ago, we were camped by a lakeshore in the mountains. The beach in front of our campsite was covered with loose rocks and pieces of driftwood, so I decided to use these to create some natural art (as I mentioned earlier that I was interested in doing). I chose a large piece of driftwood as a base for some stacked stones and a small stone spiral. Although I often see stacked and balanced stones standing along roadsides and in other rocky places, this is the first time I’ve built such stacks for myself.
It was a cool, breezy day, and the sunlight was brilliant. I sat on the beach in the wind and sunshine, slowly picking up stones and stacking them as I listened to the waves wash the shore. I started with a large squarish rock, and then stacked flatter stones on top of it. I selected my stones slowly and carefully, sometimes trying several different ones before I found one that fit. Sometimes I’d have to discard an earlier stone because I could not find any stones that could sit steady on top of it. When I finished, I surrounded my stack of stones with a circle of white pebbles. Beside the stacked stones, I built a small stone spiral, starting from the centre and slowly working my way outwards, allowing the spiral to open up as it moved out from the centre. Although I mainly worked on this piece of driftwood, I also built another stack of stones nearby, and another spiral further down the beach.
After I finished, I wondered how long my creations would last, how long it would be before the actions of wind, waves, rain, snow, animals, and perhaps even other humans would undo the work I had done. I also wondered if future visitors to the beach would see my stone stacks and spirals and wonder about who had built them. Perhaps some of those future visitors to the beach would even decide to add to my creations. I like to think that my creations will cause at least a few of those visitors to pause, just for a moment, and look around and perhaps see the place more clearly than they had before.