Sparked by Words



Pausing in the garden I search for two perfect stones.

It’s not truly a garden but the space around our house.

I’m not seeking perfect stones so much as the right ones.


They’re scattered over the yard, assorted stones and rocks.

Few flowers as they refuse to grow – not the snapdragons

With fragrant cheeks or lantana with miniature bouquets.


The flowers boast perfume, organdy petals, ballet stems.

The stones repose modestly, too plain to pirouette.

Withered bouquets will be tossed but stones remain.


Others will bring flowers but it’s stones I require, hard and strong.

Which of them will speak of endurance, of devotion? Aha!

The sharp edged one of umber strata, a smooth one with quartz veins.


The grass crushes as I kneel and lift my hands to place them,

One on my father’s grave, the other on my mother’s.

I won’t reveal on whose marker I set the sharp one or the smooth.


Pausing in the garden I search for quiet sanctuary.

It’s not truly a garden but the space around the graves.

I’m not seeking perfect solace so much as refuge.


Just a thought 50



Image of stones courtesy


Comments on: "Stones" (31)

  1. … oh; this one sunk in, quietly – the won’t-grow, the promise-of-scent, the ‘house’, the ‘garden’; I thought this was just a simple musie, but it is far a far deeper simple than that

    Liked by 2 people

  2. For me it spoke of the permanence of the stones, versus the ephemeral flowers. How lovely to choose something enduring, even everlasting, to place upon your parents’ graves.


  3. For us amateur geologists, this is powerful. Sones are so different. The imagery you’ve created in this poem is enticing.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jenna Barwin said:

    Beautiful. When it came time to place stones for my father-in-law, I brought four from a collection my mother had made. Wherever she traveled, she brought back a stone in memory of the place, and put it in a low ceramic flower dish. After she passed, I saved her collection.

    On the day we were going to visit my father-in-law’s grave, I picked out four stones that spoke to me, and made them available to my sister-in-law and her husband (they’d traveled from the East coast and were going to use the stones the cemetery provided). Everyone picked their favorite from my collection, and I placed the one leftover.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Shari, you just floor me with your beautiful words! I, too, am thinking of a garden area but your eloquence and words like devotion and endurance subtly describe your parents. I hope you found your refuge today.


  6. gravesites are indeed for those of us still alive…


  7. This means a lot to me today. My husband’s father died over the weekend. My husband and his siblings are all seeking refuge with mixed emotions.


  8. There’s no better feeling than being close. I understand and appreciate your insight. Your poetry is needed, Shari.


  9. An eloquent, beautiful “thought” poem, Sharon.


  10. I hope you found the refuge you were seeking, Shari.
    My mum and I have this little game, where we’re showing each other stones we’ve found and compare what we see in them. Very often these are faces, sometimes animal shapes, and so they all reveal a story hidden inside them. As beautiful as flowers are, they cannot compete with that and so for me placing stones on graves is a beautiful tradition.


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