Two granodiorite cobbles sit on my desk. This shouldn’t surprise you, seems my desk has almost as many rocks as papers on it. These cobbles are similar in size and shape and rock type. Each is spheroidal, shaped on the shores of British Columbia in an area where granodiorite is a common rock type in the coastal mountain ranges.
Granodiorite is an intrusive igneous rock, somewhat similar to granite, though it contains more plagioclase feldspar (which is off-white) than orthoclase feldspar (which tends to pink). It’s also composed of quartz, and darker minerals like biotite (black mica) and hornblende (an amphibolite mineral with elongated black crystals). It most often looks like a speckled, salt-and-pepper rock, as its predominant minerals are black and white. It’s hard, as rocks go, and these cobbles have endured thousands of tides rolling in and out, sculpting them.
But they’re different from each other. One, like most of the cobbles along this rocky shore, is smooth, its crystal faces polished off. The other, though perfect in shape, is rough to the touch. Its crystals haven’t been planed off, and their angular faces catch the light. I found it in a sheltered tide pool, and imagine it gently rocked to and fro, shaped by the ocean, but not honed.
There’s something exquisite about its roughness, the texture intrigues. It makes me think about the time and the forces that shape us – rocks and people – and it reminds me that rough can be beautiful too.
What shaped you?