Rock and Water – a conversation

I cannot be water, thought rock, nor can I be sun or tree.

“Why can’t you stop moving?” asks the rock of the water.
“Why are you so hard?” the water shouts upstream.

“You’d be more grounded if you would just sit still.”
“You’d have more fun if you were more like me.”

“What can you possibly see of the world, moving so fast?”
“I see everything in a delicious, swirling blur that makes me dance!”

“From where I sit, I see sun on cedar, the stars slowly striding. I see the earth turn.”
“I see all that, too.”
“I don’t see how, in all your tumult.”
“I travel from the mountains to the sea, while you can only see what’s in front of you.”

They spoke no more for a time and life continued as it always had, with the creek splashing past, the rock steadfast, water streaming down its sides, both contemplating the slow ease of the heavens.

Turtle Rock and Stinking Creek at the Fairview crossing.

I cannot be water, thought rock, nor can I be sun or tree. And water thought, I can only be what I am: rain drops sweetened by root and stone, home for water creatures, drink for deer and hawk.

“Look here,” said water, “I am home to the fishes!”
“So am I,” said rock glancing down at a sheltering trout.

Days passed, decades, with rock keeping water from losing its way and water washing rock with playful spray. Water softened rock’s edges and carried small bits of granite to the delta. Rock sweetened water with tangy minerals, and they began to see how well they worked together.

“Hey, will you look at those colors!” Rock called out to water one morning.
“Yes,” said water, “They are magnificent!”

“Like you,” said rock.

“Awww,” said the stream, blushing pink, “You are my rock! Thank you for making me sweet and keeping me safely contained.”
“Thank you for washing my face and giving me reason to laugh.”

And they lived in harmony for the rest of their years.

By Camille Armantrout

Camille lives with her soul mate Bob in the back woods of central North Carolina where she hikes, gardens, cooks, and writes.

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