Romancing the Stones

I’m not sentimental–I’m as romantic as you are. The idea, you know,
is that the sentimental person thinks things will last–the romantic
person has a desperate confidence that they won’t.”
F. Scott Fitzgerald, This Side of Paradise

Last week I attended a small birthday celebration. There was a moment in the midst of good company when I stepped back out of my body, looked on our little group as an observer.

Jan Morrill, Ruth Weeks, Patty Stith, Linda Apple, Ned Downing (Ned’s an honorary member of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pen)

I looked on this group of people whom I love and a still small voice whispered,

“This too shall pass.”

A few months ago, this group of women (minus our male mascot) traveled to Texas together.  We shared a room at a The Silver Spur Dude Ranch.  We giggled and cried, shared hopes and regrets, plot lines and character development.  Just before we drove away, we stacked rocks on the low limb of a gnarled oak–a symbol of our presence, a testament to the joy we shared in that place.

A wrangler happened by as we posed for pictures, the group of us sad to leave and talking nonsense about how our stacked stones would be waiting for us on our return the following year.

It wasn’t difficult to read the cowboy’s face.

“Every kid that stays here climbs on that tree,” he said.  “Those rocks are gonna be right back in the dirt, same as they are now, before tonight.

c101612 327

With all due respect to cowboy wisdom, he was wrong.

I have no doubt our little tower was gone before night fell.  But the stones were not the same.  When we each selected our tokens, stacked them one atop the other–in some small way, we changed the molecules, the essence of those stones.

It is not necessary for a moment to last for it to be real.  In fact the very impermanence of life is what makes it precious.  The rubbing against each other, the mixing of ideas and love and pain–that sharing changes us.

Those stones may now be scattered in the dirt.  But the fact that, for just a moment, they were part of something bigger?  That changes them forever, makes them something more than they might have been.

About Author and Speaker Pamela Foster

Pamela Foster is a speaker and author. Her first book, Redneck Goddess, is available at local bookstores and on Amazon. Her second book, Bigfoot Blues, will be available in August 2012.
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13 Responses to Romancing the Stones

  1. Ruthie says:

    Oh my lord, tears are stinging my eyelids. My dear, dear sister, Pam. What a beautiful thought and post.

  2. Duke Pennell says:

    Whenever anyone says, “Pam? Who’s she? What can she possibly say that I would be interested in?” just point them to this post. Is it any wonder we love your work? You have this beautiful heart that pushes the words out for us to see.

  3. keliwright says:

    Bittersweet, but powerful thoughts here. Thanks for sharing them, again.

  4. So true. A very nice post and reminder about life, Pam. Thanks for sharing it.

  5. Jan Morrill says:

    It’s no wonder we love you, Pam. You’re right, and I think the same thing often. I think especially as I get older I realize, it’s the very brevity of life and its events that makes these moments something to treasure.

  6. mgmillerbooks says:

    This is great. Now I’m sad again. Lol.

  7. Beth Carter says:

    What a beautiful post and testament to your bonding experience. Good friends are such a treasure and it’s wonderful that you captured this moment in prose.

  8. Pam this is beautiful and reflects your amazing, soothing, caring soul. Love you!

  9. As we go through life, we touch thousands of others in ways we probably will never know. For many our brief contact with them will leave no visible impact, but impact it will. Like your stones. Sharing a thought or idea, offering a small kindness or an angry verbal slap will be remembered, if only in someones unconscious.

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