Thursday, June 2, 2011

A Gift from the Earth

A Gift from the Earth
by Scott Bradley

We finished digging out the garden's second 45' raised bed yesterday, but not before we turned up yet another treasure. It is a shallow bowl of soapstone just big enough to fit comfortably in the palm. It is perhaps the most beautiful man-made object I have ever held. Beautiful, because somehow it moves the heart to joy and tears. It is a gift from a people long disappeared, yet still present in and to us all. It is a gift from the earth because it has come from the earth, looks like a stone, is a stone.

It is the size and shape of a small abalone shell. Its inner part is completely striated by scratches, as if made by a knife. Was this how it was made? Or was it a kind of cutting board, held in the palm, to cut leather thongs?

Its lip and exterior are rough a pitted, almost as nature made it, yet nonetheless shaped. Its feel is smooth and almost soapy, so that the hand naturally seeks out its texture, is pleasured in the feeling.

It imbues the heart with a deep sense of continuity and connectivity, to humanity, rock, earth and time. It is a true treasure.

You can check out Scott's other miscellaneous writings here.

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