Bare Life on Molten Rock


She laughs to herself, and her whole body shakes with it—she’s got a volcano to choke off. So she curls the fingers of one hand into a fist, and sears down its throat with her awareness, not burning but cooling, turning its own fury back on it to seal every breach. She forces the growing magma chamber, back, back, down, down …

N.K Jemisin, The Fifth Season, 384

We know surprisingly little about rock. Rock is red-hot, creeping, viscous stuff that we rarely see, and touch at our peril. For living things like us to enter into an intimate relationship with the lithic – to become enmeshed with rock – is to become rock. It is to meet with sudden, certain, cessation of life.

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