A Poem for Pentecost


The moment was forever
when tongues of fire were born.
We watched in aweful silence
descending of the storm.
A noise of Being speaking
without the fire we heard;
a thunder-shaking vision
without the Rabbi’s word.

The firestorm fell among us,
but peace would hold us still
as noise of fire was parted
by Heaven’s hidden will.
The flames were storm no longer,
with musical select;
a note within the mystery
for each of the elect.

Enjoined within the fire,
the old world burned away.
We saw in every person
the Word revealed that day.
And speaking from the pulpit
the Rabbi was believed;
though strange it was to hear His voice
from every voice conceived.

The moment is forever
when tongues of fire are born.
This puzzle fits together;
the Body moves in form.
I sing of every member
who bears the holy flame.
The Lord is come in glory here
and holy is His name.

Published in Religion & Philosophy
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  1. Saint Augustine Member
    Saint Augustine

    Well done.

    And amen!

    • #1
  2. Belt Member

    Hmm – Were you thinking of joining this to a hymn melody perhaps?

    • #2
  3. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller

    Belt (View Comment):

    Hmm – Were you thinking of joining this to a hymn melody perhaps?

    Well, I’m a songwriter foremost, so all my poems are written from that perspective. But with music there is more variation in rhythm, meter, and rhyme because the words and notes play together. Think of a song like “The Wind Cries Mary” by Jimi Hendrix for an example of music guiding syllables. 

    Maybe I will try to make a song of it. Thanks. 

    The poem began largely in response to the oddity of describing the Holy Spirit’s entrance as “a noise like a strong driving wind” in Acts 2. Noises are typically unpleasant or unordered, while the Lord is beautiful and purposeful. Perhaps it is only because the Holy Ghost was not yet gifted to the Apostles, the tongues of fire not yet integrated, that the Lord’s entrance seemed to lack the music of the divine Will. 

    • #3