‘Make Rubicon Peak take three steps’
~ PZI Miscellaneous Koans
Probably the most creative expression of koans are when apples become oranges, or better yet, pesky chipmunks. A real world example: while standing in the unemployment line, laid off as a tour guide, hoping to go to graduate school, a teacher once realized profoundly that he was sitting with ease on the tip of a needle (one of the miscellaneous koans).
But sometimes apple koans meet apple responses. I have been for three days in the Desolation Wilderness with a heavy pack on my back, revisiting a steep trail I passed over nearly 40 years ago.
Step, step, step. My life has moved, but the vast granite chiefs standing sentinel around our path are unchanged. My story, all our stories, reflect and show their light against these grand stone faces. And the sheer rock walls warmly invite the tales of all travelers be told to them.
‘It has been ten years since I came to Cold Mountain,’ wrote Hanshan, ‘And I have already forgotten the path by which I came, ” Not true. Not true. We all come by the Eagle Falls trail.