A Stone is a Riddle

April 17, 2012

One stone from my collection of favorite found objects

by Charles Simic

Go inside a stone
That would be my way.
Let somebody else become a dove
Or gnash with a tiger’s tooth.
I am happy to be a stone.

From the outside the stone is a riddle:
No one knows how to answer it.
Yet within, it must be cool and quiet
Even though a cow steps on it full weight,
Even though a child throws it in a river;
The stone sinks, slow, unperturbed
To the river bottom
Where the fishes come to knock on it
And listen.

I have seen sparks fly out
When two stones are rubbed,
So perhaps it is not dark inside after all;
Perhaps there is a moon shining
From somewhere, as though behind a hill —
Just enough light to make out
The strange writings, the star charts
On the inner walls.

Gray stone with white ring

You can hear Simic read this poem at Poetry Everywhere.

3 Responses to “A Stone is a Riddle”

  1. Renee Says:

    Wow, what an unusual stone. I too pick up stones (is there a difference between stones and rocks) when I find one that catches my eye

  2. Elephant's Eye Says:

    once was a quartzite seam, now tells a story.

  3. Elisa's Spot Says:

    I love it!! I really like working with granite. I’ve faceted it!

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