Recently ordained as a samurai or was she a veteran, no one knows for what is the difference between new and old journeys… Experience! Experience? Experience is always limited, tied to the past, a guide it maybe, yes, just that, but not a compass, for the working compass points towards the present, always.
And grannie, the samurai never called herself a samurai… she said, and I have heard too grannie, she called herself a walker.
Hmm… yes, yes, that’s right too, but listen what happened next. She crossed the ocean of the golden grass that swayed with the silken wind, her hands stroking the golden waves past her, dancing a little to the left, then to the right, dancing to dodge the crickets, grasshoppers and in some seasons the dragonflies. Some seasons? Some seasons, yes, for she has crossed this ocean of the golden grass many a times.
You mean the meadow, right grannie? Golden grass ocean is where we play? Because I have seen her passing by.
Yes kiddo! So, listen now, she crosses this ocean to climb the reverberating grand mountain range… mountains that speak and its white peaks touch the sky, its high peaks that speak that us chaps fail to see for we bend to sow seeds, our backs ache and speak a different language that doesn’t reaches the peaks that speak.
But the samurai’s footprints, when in the mood, talk and share anecdotes and so we know somethings like that she stands still to sleep and drinks fresh water for breakfast and dinner, skipping lunch altogether, that she takes different routes to reach the top in search of an answer.
Grannie, she bought flour from the market one day, I saw her. She knows how to cook too.
The footprints are complete, not weak, she is never in a hurry, walking ahead, different routes but one direction. Where to? What chasing question she chases? What can be seen that is hidden in these glorious mountains? An answer? Why again? Yes, again… isn’t the old answer relevant anymore? Or is the question too old, dimming the revelation in-turn? Or there’s no question, no answer to be known?
Kiddo? You asleep, good. Rest now, for you too have to go on a long walk soon.
The samurai, standing on the mountain peak, her hundredth journey, maybe, she mutters, for she stopped counting long time back, for it didn’t answer, it dated the time passed and that is all. Why hundredth then? For impact, she whispers.
Biting cold wind reminded nothing of its silken version that swayed the golden grass, the meadows that looked like a shiny river from there. The samurai looked in one direction for hours, concentrating madly, couldn’t see clearly when suddenly a brisk energy filled her fully, and she stopped looking in one direction, and looked at the panorama fully, the whole of it and not just a part.
The question, the answer busted in joy then, concentration took a dive into complete attention, a clarity dawned that stopped the samurai from checking time, for the whole movement moved in her wholly.
This one movement played like a melodious orchestra around her, that from that day, the samurai walker didn’t imagine her goal, but saw the radiant whole.
The job was done, yet the samurai walked, fought and caught the fallen and rose every time, looking, from a certain angle, as tall and strong as the mountains.
And those who have heard the peaks, mostly the oldies like our grannie, even once – the echoes of the purple caves – they have spent the days and nights in glorifying it as a legend, speaking in riddles, confusing all and never…
Hey, where’s my stick? Wait, you!!
She walks without counting, checking time
Or imagining a direction, she walks
Matter-of-factly, fearlessly, lightly
Like the rainbow after a storm-Samurai’s footprints