1.15.11 The Ancient Stone

Bonsai at Nelson Quarry
The Ancient Stone and Pine

SHONIN
Ordinarily, stones only manifest their inner life discreetly and to the eyes of the wise alone. But this stone had so much spirit dwelling in it that it seeped out despite itself at every pore. It was riddled with it, ravined, pitted and grooved, it had valleys, gorges, gulfs, peeks and canyons, It listened and marked through a thousand ears, blinked and wept with a thousand eyes, laughed and sang with a thousand mouths. What was to happen, happened. The seed of a pine tree, drawn by such a hospitable nature, came and settled on it.

And the pine cone germinated. And the seed, whose power is colossal because all the strength of the tree is concentrated in it, split the stone. And out of the crack wriggled a young pine, bending and writhing like a dragon dancing…
(text borrowed from “Gardens,” by Robert Pogue Harrison)

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