Handfuls of Small Stones

  • Linear Location

    Canal Park (North End), Grand Rapids, Michigan, US

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Overview

This plaque was featured in the first of the Mysterious Postcards.

The plaque tells the story of the reenactingStones and as such is one a handful of key sites for understanding the importance of islands in Kcymaerxthaere.

Access

If you head north from downtown Grand Rapids along Monroe (the first street in from the river on the left bank [east bank at that point]) you will get to Canal Park aways after the 6th Street Bridge. It will be right along the river. At the north end of the park, just before you get to the intersection with Walbridge, there will be a parking lot on the left. Go down towards the river, there will be a concavity indented into the bank. The plaque is at the north end

The legal address of Canal Park seems to be:

941 Monroe NW Grand Rapids

So it is about 400 yards upriver from the 6th street bridge on the left bank. Plaque is right on river.

Public Dedication

It was all part of the first ArtPrize event in 2009, and all 5 of the plaques in Grand Rapids were dedicated on an epic (well 90 minutes) walking tour and exploration during on the 19th.  (Check date)

Text of the Marker

The part of the story installed here:

Handfuls of Small Stones

For many gwomes (a Cognate word meaning “footprint of the nation”—essentially like a country or culture) of Kcymaerxthaere, the scattering of small stones in water was an essential part of their creation story. The people of Erailen, the gwome that appeared to be on this side of the river, were no exception. The passage of a rock into immersion could also symbolize the life of an individual, of a community, even what we think of as a planet. A humble pebble could be an anggroav, a difficult to translate term referring to the tendency of some islands to be their own universes, with their own laws of time and space.

Every 350 sunrises, each New Years Day, just before Erailen dawn, no matter the time of day across the river, no matter the state of the gwomal frontier, the community gathered in this amphitheater (once much bigger) to watch their leaders reimagine themselves as founding Gods. Taking sacred stones (generally simple crushed rock, mixed with gifts from Petoskey gwome) from a tarsoph like that behind you, they threw their handfuls with a care that amounted to placement. The collective hearts and minds of all watching willed these new anggroavs further still, into a kind of slow motion. For those moments, sometimes lasting days on end, new worlds thrived here in archipelagoes at dawn.

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