To the Mountaintop – a Triptych, Part One

I don’t dare hike up Mt. Sabbatus today because of the shotgun sounds I hear.

Would there be enough time to tell that rifle that I am not a deer?

Instead I’ll drift back to the summer day I climbed with friends.

Huffing and puffing trekking higher using tree roots for steps

My peppy pup Gus enjoyed showing off;

Four legs climbing so much faster than two

Gus waited patiently for us to catch up.

Which is what any nice guy would do

Six sweaty backs, groping for the end

Till finally we sited the small monument

that reminds hikers of young Tom’s accidental death

Just what we wanted to see!

Yes, because it meant good views and rest

No because, exhausted, we imagined how Tom may have felt that day to reach his stop

We were stung by the glad and sad meanings of the end

until we found the view.

Our eyes spanned the great valley beneath; little lakes, lots of treetops.

Too high to see people or their homes,

too high to hear lies, too high to be squeezed through  days at work.

I wanted to stay on the mountain and talk to God.


Like Moses who climbed Sinai alone to visit God

 Who lived there with His telescopic x-ray eyes

Watching the good, the bad, and the vast lukewarm.

No wonder God sent Jesus to us below.

To lead us to the mountaintop

Distance from diabolical dirty disease of evil

Closeness to God’s light and ultimate purpose

View of glorious New Jerusalem descending.

Opening of the books and Book of Life


Sergeant Jesus leads the expedition to the pinnacle of Holy Mountain

“This hike is not for cowards or liars,” he says

We are warned of the dangers.

Troops must trust each other.

At the foot of the great mountain Sergeant J sends unbelievers away.

Who could climb so long and hard and high without a hope?


Murderers, sorcerers, and those repulsive detestable monsters

He lets right on our path!

Methinks to feed the lake of fire.

Idol worshippers and sex addicts

dressed in camouflage military garb wait not for permission to join

seeking entertainment, and mischief, the beasts.

 Are those fools in for a hot surprise?! No lie!


We true hiker mountain-climbers grab every word that God sends

To us from Sergeant Jesus mouth.

“Know the RULES he shouts, write them on your hands and hearts.

Cling to me as we climb.

If sincerely you seek the top you must be more than ordinary men.

Dangers lurk around each corner.

Enemies are among us

whoever endures until the end,

will see the New Jerusalem descend. Let’s go!”


Off he strides with two long steps before he turns to say,

“My reward is with me,” then he shouts,” to give to every hiker, mountain climber,” then louder, “according to his WORK.”


Raring to go, we start out fast; surprised by the ease.

“Help those in trouble,” we hear Sarge call, megaphone in hand

And when he sees us tiring or veering off the path he yellls, “foCUS!” Just like that.

Once I tripped upon a root, fell and scraped my knee

which caused ugliness to spill from my mouth in say

so I heard him shout to me,

 “No swearing here, ten yard penalty. Hops, go to the rear!”

Off I went in shame and humility.


That night in camp I overheard a hiker complain

that someone stole his compass and water bottle,

two important things.

Sarge overheard and said, “Let it go. Give to the thieves and beggars whatever they desire without a second thought, you hear?”

That was the day I first noticed the air felt thinner and didn’t dare look down.


He pushed me! I heard another complain, whining all the while.

Sergeant just grinned and said, “Give the man a smile.”                                                                                                                                                                                

If only the murders and monsters had been sent away,

this could have been a journey of happier holy hikers,

reaching for their mountaintop day. 


And so ends part one with my complaint retroactive constructive recommendation.

Not the end yet my friend.