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The cave up the mountain

The young mountain to our right is bald. The path is visible only to the discerning eye; the rock scrubbed clean by the footsteps of travellers and pilgrims who have trudged up before. The afternoon sun sits high but the cool wind makes the climb seem inviting. It is everything it promises to be at first sight; exhausting, rewarding, scary — what a drop! — and meditative.

The elements, the sun, and the drop are constant companions. If you’re the kind who enjoys a gravel slide, do sniff it out. You’ll love it. As the mind churns with questions feeding the insecurity within, “If going up is so difficult, how will you make it down?”, the gravel keeps one rooted in the moment.

With the inner critic and its constant churning competing with the shifting pebbles under my feet, the cave is reached. The rest wait. Silent. Smiling, to themselves. Everyone in her/his own element.

It is cool, if musty, inside the cave. The floor is coated with oil but pleasing to sit on. An oil lamp is lit. Prayers are said. Some meditate. Others sit sombre. Each in her/his own space. The rigours of ascents past forgotten and the anxiety of descents to come an accepting reality. What was-is shall remain. What shall be shall be taken in stride.

The elements, the sun, and the drop are constant companions. Souls tranquil, voices, inner and outer, silent, we make off with the memories. The descent is spent pinging one foot after the other from foothold to foothold. No drop. No gravel. No fear. No voices. Only the element. Only me. Only you.

The silence is broken at some point but not the spell. There is no spell to be broken. What lies within the body is a reality.


Published by appamprawns

soni writes about children and people in controlled spaces, in his quest for appam stew. homi writes in the hope of being able to buy prawns to make patiyo.

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