Tag Archives: Virginia Woolf

A Stony Question

There is a little pocket of space beneath the ICB where the Allison street bridge meets Sandgate Rd at the roundabout.  Unless you were exploring beyond Yowoggera Park on foot, or enjoying the creek by kayak, canoe or boat it is a hidden pocket.

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Walking this area for many years now we still experience a thrill coming upon this place, as if we’re unearthing a lost Roman amphitheater or ancient Greek temple. At this end of the Yland there are shiny brut concrete columns extending across the creek supporting the raised motorway of the ICB . Those across the creek flanking the entrance to the headquarters of ad agency GOA have been papered with the flutings of Corinthian columns.

The stones forming the bank of the creek here are not rounded smooth by river water but sharp-edged flinty blue stones appearing as a mosaic of quick ripples, lapping the base of the  columns by the water’s edge.

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There is an otherworldliness here and I think of Virginia Woolf filling her  pockets with stones for ballast before stepping into the water. Were the stones water washed and smooth in her palms? Did she carefully choose them one by one, feeling their weight, adding it up, calculating their combined effects? Or were they stones like these stones, their geometry pretend polyhedrons, mathematical straight edges drawn into existence by the crushing process of a machine. In Roman times stones were believed to contain spirits, numina, which were revered for their divinatory properties.

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