The blue yak
The atmosphere is hazy, warm, even sticky. I feel my skin stinging as if so many syringes inject energy into my body. Refreshed and at the same time anticipating the upcoming heat I start to move. The scenery is undulating, elegant, tempting. Where am I going to? I frantically try to use an old dream to steer my life. But my instincts are stronger, they manipulate my future, my course, my destination. Which way today? My life seems so petty, so void, but in my quest I find my meaning. To be traveling, not seeking, just to be traveling. I don’t reflect, I follow my intuition, thought and action are amalgamated in my essence. I have learned and experienced that not much is what it looks like and much imitates its own reality. I have an acutely developed sense for this.
I am my own transport, but where is my pilot. People around me don’t say a thing, staring in the distance. I’m startled, do I look like that? Probably not, I hope not, but I don’t have the urge to verify. Not important, I reassure myself, I have my own focus. In the distance I see green fields, and slowly but steadily the morning mist dissolves. The world is unveiled by invisible hands, hands that unfold a fluid world. A daily routine for the world, a daily spectacle for me, each time breathtaking. How the world wriggles like a butterfly out of its chrysalis to be, even for a moment, the most majestic of all, to be corrupted next by every second it lives. Is that the world? Am I that, am I this ethereal, incorporeal essence? I have to go, to move, but whereto?
Through my lashes I see something in the distance that looks like a vehicle. Is it a bus, a dinghy? I move into that direction and see a dog on a dog sled. Why not harnessed? The dog barks, drools a bit but sits calmly on the sled. Where is his boss, why is it on the sled, what am I to make of it? Questions I don’t know how to answer, used as I am to a life of coincidence, inaction, just being moved by life, time, my essentiality. I myself am like the awakening world, my psyche covered in a veil of being and non-being, of knowing and non-knowing. Am I myself, do I even live my own life, who am I?
A bit further down I see more people. They are waiting, but I suspect they don’t know for what. Inefficiency, impotence and resignation emanates from the group. When I come closer I can see what is going on. A woman is preparing a cart. The barn looks decrepit and shabby, a bit of hay stacked in the left corner. No horses or other animals nearby, the smell is almost neutral. It matches the state of mind of the spectators who are waiting, showing no emotions. Although the woman is struggling no one lifts a finger.
After fumbling about for some time it looks like the woman wants to tell us we can get in. One by one they get in, without a word. The space is cramped, but willingly everyone squeezes into one another without a grumble or complaint. The crowd still stands squeezed together and expressionless when I am coming. Almost automatically they try to make some room for me. I get on the cart. No contact. It is only now that I realize the woman has disappeared. We all look out with a vacant stare, waiting for the things to come. I have lost every sense of time, for all I know we may have been there all morning. Not a sound, just the melody of birds and the crescendo murmur of water. Every now and then the dog on the sled barks, but other than that it does not stir.
The sound of the rising water is growing stronger, but still no signs of anyone feeling anxious. In the distance I see the water rising, it is flowing from the hillsides and moves like a silver trail into the direction of our barn. It reaches the barn and flows out from front to back. Nobody on the cart moves. The water does not make it beyond the top step. The overall atmosphere is one of resignation, acquiescence, yes even of surrender, but also the confidence everything will turn out well. Oddly enough the water takes a bend avoiding the dog on the sled. As if nature had become an autonomous substance with respect for all living creatures.
By mid-afternoon, when all the water had retreated, the woman returns. Following her is an animal, shaggy and confident. It does not have a rope around its neck, it walks unfettered and sovereign after her. It is as if the animal has decided for itself to come up to us. Because of the bright sunlight I cannot very well discern what kind of animal it is, but once closer I see it is a yak. But what is the most extraordinary thing, perhaps even the most bizarre thing, is its color. This yak is completely blue, except for its horns. I stealthily look at the people around me, but see no sign of confusion. Where have I ended up?
The yak takes the correct position to be harnessed on its own initiative. The woman does what she is supposed to do and leaves. The yak turns its head and looks me straight in the eyes. I feel a mild shock, this must mean something. Will this blue yak be my itinerary, direct my life? Of whom or what is the yak a reincarnation? Do I know it from a previous life? My initial shock transforms into a soothing joy. I have been recognized, I am convinced of that now. Therefore I exist, I have been recognized and acknowledged. The blue yak is my source of life.
After a short while the yak sets off. Every fifteen minutes a passenger gets off while the yak continuous very slowly. After a couple of hours I am the only remaining passenger, but I haven’t got a clue where to get off. The yak continues walking, and gradually darkness sets in. I feel I need to confront the yak. How I am supposed to do that, have always been an outside observer, never ever fitted in. No pack animal, just myself. Never been a problem, only occasionally a starting agonizing sensation of loss, a feeling of not belonging. Usually the flow of my inner source becomes too strong, I am transported by my intuition, by my basic feelings of being. In that sense I have always been alone, an individual without attachment and bonding. Is it possible all these people today have the same experience? Why didn’t I ask, or has that not even crossed my mind? Do I suffice myself? The only thing I can say now is an unequivocal ‘yes’.
The yak starts to slow down a bit as if it wants to say it is time for me to get off. I look around and see the vague outlines of a darkening world. The splendid colors of the setting sun is making room for the elusive realm of darkness. The stars in the sky shine bright, but however they try they do not reach me.
I wait for my blue yak to go and find its herd, but I see and hear no other yaks in the vicinity. Just like this afternoon the yak turns its head and looks me straight in the eyes. This time I feel no apprehension, I return the gaze with joy and an unforeseen understanding. I have never wondered why my essence lives the way it does, always literally from day to day with the greatest paradoxically meaningful fascination being subjected to changes, the seasons, days, hours, minutes and seconds. Now at the end of this day, eye to eye with a blue yak, I see what the yak is trying to tell me. From time to time I, blue yak, also struggle with my essence. I, too, do not belong to a group, I, too, do not feel that as a problem, but then again I am visibly and recognizably different from the rest: I am blue. It almost seems the yak is suggesting why I have not asked it why it is blue. Am I so fixated on myself, so obsessed with myself? All of a sudden I recognize myself in the yak, not as a shock, but a brief fleeting moment of knowing and sensing all. That I have inner peace, wisdom, that my soul is cleansed, that I live in harmony with my surroundings and so in harmony with my blue yak and that I can rely on my intuition. In the gaze of the yak I recognize myself, I embrace what it stands for.
I get off and unharness the yak. It follows me to the step and deliberately gets on the cart. I put the steering rope around my shoulders and look back at the yak who is looking me straight in the eyes. In the distance I can just see a fire burning. Nearby is a dog sled, a dog on it. It barks.