Mysterium Tremendum–A Day at Hawk Mountain


The perch gave such a view of the dale

That I held my breath for a moment’s time

In fear that I would miss the subtler of nature’s art

And fail to heed important matters of the heart.


It was from that high and lofty place

That I beheld up in the sky

A soaring falcon dark against the sun

That glided on the breeze of Another One.


I felt the wind and heard its sound

That sang the mystery of the world.

And then a chill went up and down my spine,

As I perceived the giving of a sign.


I looked upon the sandstone ridge

And then to the distant woodland hills.

My sight continued to the far, blue rim

That roused in me the yearning to sing a hymn.


And so I joined the mighty wind

In singing the song of love and peace.

The heavens and earth to my mortal joy and delight

Did lift and inspire this poor and simple wight.


And then the moon arose in the east,

As the greater light was setting in the west.

Deep shadows, cast upon the uneven ground,

Grew long upon the rugged, bouldery mound.


I ceased my song in wonder at the sight

And asked myself, what god attends?

That Other One, whom I that day discerned,

Revealed His Word to a prophet Israel spurned.


What fear and love Elijah knew

On that holy mount where he stood.

The Lord, not in the wind, came passing by;

But, in a low whisper did the Lord draw nigh.


As crystal clear night began to fall,

I rested ecstatic in that tranquil place.

The Lord of All said, “Know I am God and be still.”

And so I abode all night on that holy hill.


Michael G. Tavella


The Sixth Sunday after the Epiphany,  2023



Musings during the Hours of Night
The Lower Yellowstone River Falls