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By Chris Carter

I long for Pentecost flame,

a blazing tongue articulating

praise thread by the crackle

of sacred letters, heaven-ward

syllables leaping like the Spirit

burning above my brow.

Yet in this quiet moment

when the wood has gone to ash

and the embers are a memory

of life once ablaze,

my tongue lies dumb and

heavy in my mouth, a tomb

for worship without life.

But still you burn,

a small blaze set on candle,

a flickering light holding

vigil against the night,

for Pentecost fire is but

Noah’s dove seeking

a steady wick to

hold its flame.


Chris Carter is a writer, poet, and photographer living in Los Angeles. He is the author of Prodigal Disciples and has had work published in Ekstasis Magazine, Bible Advocate, The Penwood Review, and The Secret Place. You can find him on Instagram @chriscarter_photography


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