Poem by Jaime Potter-Miller

April 26-May 6, 1988

No doubt the light has shined on our proceedings
But light alone falls short of what we’re needing.
Give us fire.

Sufficient, not illumination lacking,
Flow thoughts, juxtapositions, logic’s trackings.
But we need fire.

Fire, not just inspiring fresh ideas;
Fire, not merely bright’ning this arena
Where words are strung together with precision—
Syntax and tense and text display cohesion—
O, Give us fire!

Ignite a flame that kindles in our minds
And burns the rotting wood; mount in its path
A holocaust to cool sophistication.
Fire will warm, but not to warmth confine,
Fire that destroys, consumes and yields to wrath
The smallest tinder-twig of resignation.
O God, Your fire!

With friction of the Word and Wind entreat
And sear with fiery tongue and glowering heat
To melt our will, all hard and ice-encrusted;
To forge an alloy with no threat of rusting
Burnished in the white-heat, flames out-thrusting:
Living fire.

No sacrifice, however erudite,
Will ever be consumed by only light.
Give us fire.

Jaime Potter-Miller. ©1988. Songs of Quiet Trust 1994-1995, United Theological Seminary. Dayton, Ohio.