“It is not enough to cover the rock with leaves.” —Wallace Stevens I recently told someone, that if I were to live after death, after all this time attempting humanness, I would want to come back as a rock.
As a child, I collected them. Even had a rock tumbler, which I never quite understood enough to use, but was meant to promote shine and polish to the grooves and curves.
I recently walked beneath the Manhattan Bridge toward the Brooklyn one and closer to the water. I stumbled over wet rocks and crushed shells, channeling the slowdown that is often forgotten in NYC. I threw these rocks into the water and listened to the rhythm of stones cutting into the language of waves. The view of circles forming. The shape of interruption.
These rocks felt more human than watching the “real” ones beside me, glowing behind their telephones and forgetting to notice the beautiful wet right beside them.
Sometimes, I walk around in a silent battle with myself and what I present. These rocks are simple and yet so deeply complex. They are hard and impenetrable, like me. Like me. When they are thrown, they bounce against other rocks or they splash. Rarely they dent. Their bruises are hidden. Like me. Like me.
The stone is grey and freckled with eastern dust. Kept in pocket, it cuts hips. In hand, it digs into palm. When touched, it enhances the heat of who holds it. The stone is trauma’d. It has been displaced and prefers not to talk about its previous amputations. Do not catalogue, organize or nickname the stone. The stone has been shoved into fires of coordinates that stretch beyond state lines, territories and provinces. The stone has been used as a weapon; it has deflated bone. Notice the blood stains against its minerals. The stone cannot keep a lover; its historical uprooting disallows dialogues on monogamy or the existence of marriage. The stone has been a perch for others, glued into walls, walked over by callused feet, and licked by ocean. The stone is rib’less and gender’less. Call it androgynous, but the stone refuses to pick a side or sign or stagnant approach to infrastructure. The stone is a danger to itself and others; it has seen too much. Never mention the time the stone ********. Just do not mention that, please. The stone suffers from phantom limb syndrome, though its legs have never existed nor arms or approachable neck. The stone is sad. The stone has no womb, yet yearns to engage in the exercise which publicizes fertility. The stone is without race or religion. It’s color exists from the salt of earth’s breaths and fumes from sun. The stone is still in search of its god. The stone does not conform to any political party and yet this stone is queer. And yet this stone marches for the freedom of others and yet this stone is still. And the stone meditates. And the stone chants. And the stone is in search of its ceremonious existence within its scarred and scared packaging.