#stone

by maggie

stones are small pieces of rock. they may be bigger than houses in some cases, but if they have fallen off a mountain then they are stones. stones come in a variety of sizes, some classify anything bigger than sand as gravel, others have a more nuanced gradation of descriptions.
Pebbles are between 4 and 64 mmm in diametre. Cobbles are between 64 and 256 mm in size. Boulders between 256 and 630 mm. large boulders are bigger. so while you can now pick out the correct stone in an identity parade, what is it that makes stones interesting to look at.

what makes a handsome stone? is it the colour, the shape, any pattern it carries, it’s tactile qualities? Of all the millions on a shingle beach what makes you bend and pluck any particular pebble from amongst it’s siblings?
Of course taking stones from the beach is illegal now, but the family totem has been collected over generations.

imageLucky stones to be strung up together all the live long day without the danger of being smashed to pieces in the surf zone. Mostly they are flints and limestone pieces. The big white one is chalk and the red one brick. They’ve all been interfered with by marine molluscs sometime in their history ( all thought I’m not sure about the brick).
The beach isn’t the only place you find water worn stones. Here at home sand and gravels over lies grey clay. Once the broad tops of the hills were a big out wash area filling with quaternary deposits. Where the grass has worn away the sandy subsoil is filled with little round pebbles in black, yellow and red. They have been out of the water a long time.

Rocks are squeezed and stretched; some times they tear, sometimes they bend. they are filled with cracks. Then the water gets in. In the end bits fall off. They can be big as a house and ever so dramatic, or as small as a grain as sand. Sometimes the rock itself dissolves, leaving for example quartz crystal when the ?? in granite turns to clay, or lime stone retreating in every rain shower.
You have to bare all this in mind when you recreate stones in paper of ink.
What are the stones made of, do all the parts country rock and veins have the same resilance? how did they break? the corners will get rounded equally, but an odd shaped break will make an odd shaped stone.

 

MER

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