Olivet

In Brief

Mount "Olivet," a ridge in East Jerusalem, is the site from which the resurrected Christ ascended into heaven, according to Acts 1:9-12. Like a hangglider finding the right updraft off a cliff face, Mulligan prepares to perform his crowning imitatio Christi, a spiritual takeoff: "running forward to a brow of the cliff, [he] fluttered his hands at his sides like fins or wings of one about to rise in the air."

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We do not learn that he succeeds, but at the end of Cyclops Bloom does: "And there came a voice out of heaven, calling: Elijah! Elijah! And He answered with a main cry: Abba! Adonai! And they beheld Him even Him, ben Bloom Elijah, amid clouds of angels ascend to the glory of the brightness at an angle of fortyfive degrees over Donohoe's in Little Green street like a shot off a shovel."

JH 2011
The Mount of Olives, photographed from the East Gate of the Temple Mount, 2009. Source: Wikimedia Commons.