Landers Giant Rock: “The Silent Cry of A Giant,” by Joanna Andersen

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gient rock2

How did that chuck fall off?

Joanna Anderson of Landers decided to write a story about Giant Rock using what she thinks the “ROCK” would say if it were to convey its feelings about the massive chunk that fell from her mass.

“Before ‘MAN’ drove his first spike into my mighty hull.”

The Sun Runner” awarded a 2008 1st place to Ms. Anderson for her story.  It is republished here from a Landers social media group. 

Prologue by Joanna Andersen

On a below freezing night in February 2000, some “humans” set a huge fire under the overhang of the big belly of Giant Rock.

As the raging heat collided with the frigid cold, a huge chunk, the size of a large boat, fell off the side of Giant Rock.

A couple of days later, people came with tar and black spray paint and spewed obscenities on the beautiful pure white glistening rock’s insides.

I felt very sad that this happened to yet another of nature’s wonders at the hands of man.

I decided to write a story about it using what I think the “ROCK” would say, if she could convey her feelings.

In 2008 a friend of mine convinced me to enter my story into a contest to get it published in “The Sun Runner” magazine in SOCAL. It was judged by several writers and poets, along with many other entries and I won 1st place.


by Joanna Andersen

I am awesome. I stand tall and proud. I am one of a kind. I weigh more than 100 thousand tons. I triumphed against hot gasses, meteor showers, burning chemicals, several ice ages, thousands of earthquakes, millions of years of blistering heat, sand blasting winds, deluging rains and floods, lightening strikes, sleet, snow and hail, below freezing temperatures and long droughts.
No living thing on earth, past or present, could have withstood the extreme atmospheric conditions I have braved with such fortitude. I witnessed the beginning of life on earth. I saw the time of the dinosaurs. I gave shelter to the first humans. I have been admired, revered and respected and thought of as sacred by many. The Indians called me “The Great Stone” and “The Heart of Our Mother”. (It indeed resembles a human heart).
I stood for millions of years in the same place before “MAN” drove his first spike into my mighty hull. I’ve been climbed on, stoned, burned, carved, dynamited and shot at with nearly every caliber of projectile known to man. “Man” has chopped away at me, spit on me and spewed every human excrement on me. Worst of all, he has defaced me with a mass of caustic substances. Painting everything from simple words and names to depicting the most vile, repulsive words and pictorials known to so-called “humanity”.
Since the existence of “humans”, I have undergone a barrage of assaults. I have been left standing alone, stripped of my dignity and respect only to see them return and assault me again. Does anyone care that I am unique, I am special, that I should be protected and admired?
They came in the second month of “their” new millennium (a measure of time, not of my own) and once again set me ablaze. Then came the cold, cold night and the loud sound of cracking near dawn. Alone, and to no avail, I struggled to hold myself together. Suddenly a huge chunk of my side broke away and hit the ground with an enormous thud in a huge cloud of dust, exposing my brilliant white insides.
Within days, more bullies came to violate me still again with more obscenities and more chemicals. They could not and would not hear me weep as I silently mourned my loss. It does not hold reasoning that something so big and so strong is so defenseless. Ironically the only ones capable of protecting me are the very ones destroying me. And so it goes with everything in nature that “Man” thinks is at his disposal.
It is difficult for me to confess my fear that even one as majestic as I could be reduced to just an ordinary rock, or even a grain of sand if left in the hands of these so-called, “compassionate beings”.

Giant Rock is a large freestanding boulder in the Mojave Desert directly adjacent to Landers, California, that covers 5,800 square feet of ground and is seven stories high. Giant Rock was purported to be the largest free standing boulder in the world until a large piece broke off in 2000. Wikipedia
“The fabled Giant Rock had attracted the first native nomads hundreds of years before settlements rose from the dusty ground. The granite stone and surrounding ground had been held as holy ground by the Native Americans. It is reported that the Hopi knew of this rock and joined other tribes across the desert to convene and celebrate the coming seasons. Shaman drew spiritual strength for the tribes through this rock. It is also said that the magic in the rock represents the heart of Mother Earth. It is also thought to be the world’s largest freestanding boulder — at about seven stories high and covers 5,800 square feet of ground.” — The Intrigue of Giant Rock By Barbara LaGrange

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