Creation – Destruction

Lately, I’ve been arranging rocks on the shore of the lake.  I think about the contrast between the permanence of the rocks themselves and the transitory nature of what I do with them.  I never know how long something I create will last.

Today I spent an hour selecting white rocks in graduated sizes, creating a spiral on a three foot wide stump.  Thinking about the path I travel, getting caught up in tiny details of small stones as the curve tightens in the center.


And then, just as I started to take photos from a vantage point above the shore, a boy came along, momentarily considered the design, and within 5 seconds flung all of the rocks into the lake in two swift motions.


And climbed triumphantly onto the stump to kick off one remaining rock.


And it was gone.  But the rocks and the stump remain, and I can create again another day.

4I felt sorry for the boy, choosing to destroy rather than to just appreciate.  I hope that someday I will see someone choose to add to one of my arrangements. But the joy is in creating, and there is meaning for me in the deliberate process.

It was a good day.

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2 Responses to Creation – Destruction

  1. Christine says:

    Did you say anything to the lad? I noticed you got a few pictures of him after the deed. I wonder what you might have said and what his reply might have been. Share?
    I am glad you think it was a good day after all. It must have been a little disheartening to watch it happen and for the rocks to have been flung into the lake where they would be nearly impossible to retrieve.
    It would make some interesting investigating to watch what happens to your creations and “catch” the culprits destroying or adding to your creations. It would also be interesting to know what the responses were when you confronted them. When I say confronted I don’t mean in a negative way….just what was going through their minds when they “responded” to your work.

    • Diane says:

      I didn’t say anything. I was too far away, on a trail above the shore, and it happened very fast. The two photos with the boy are the only ones I took. He had a lot of energy and was out of sight before I could take another. If I had been closer, if I had time to think about it, I might have asked him why he did it. And I imagine he would have said something like he wanted room to climb on top of the stump. Just a kid doing kid stuff. In the moment, I was sorry he couldn’t appreciate the design, sorry to have it brushed away so soon. But I had the pleasure of creating the spiral, and I knew, even as I gathered the rocks, it would probably not be there on my next visit.

      On the other hand, I thought the same thing when I created this double spiral 3 weeks ago, and it is still there.
      You just never know…