“There was a tiny, whispering sound. When he heard this, Elijah hid his face in his cloak.”
– 1 Kings 19:12-13
No prophet I secured on Horeb’s peek
From Jezebel and Ahab on the fly,
Within an inner fastness yet I seek
The voice that says the Lord is passing by.
A thunderstorm would only amplify
The absence of a truly living sound;
An earthquake, though it seemed to shake the sky,
Is gravel-voiced, a belch of upturned ground.
Though Nature with fortissimo abounds,
Its Maker seems to take a softer tone,
In susurrant and scintillating sounds
Heard best when, like a prophet, we’re alone.
Or like the sunlight in the woods today
That whispered something only God could say.
Jeffrey Essmann is an essayist and poet living in New York. His poetry has appeared in numerous magazines and literary journals, among them Dappled Things, the St. Austin Review, the Society of Classical Poets, The Chained Muse, The Road Not Taken, Agape Review, America Magazine, U.S. Catholic, Grand Little Things, Heart of Flesh Literary Journal, Edge of Faith, Pensive, and various venues of the Benedictine monastery with which he is an oblate. He is editor of the Catholic Poetry Room.