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(click image for excerpt of each part)




Rome, Joshua of Nazareth, the “Dark Ages”

A Renaissance


Part One Part Two Part Three Part Four Part Five Epilogue

Allegorical, written over a period of forty troubling years, Receptive to Fire explores steps in human evolution.  In many places at many times, it discovers encouraging signs that we still might evolve in positive ways (perhaps even survive as a species) if we come to understand something of our deep history.

You’ll find invented characters – Neurod [Nēu-rod], Hurabo [Who-rāh-bo], Bahdawils [Bāh-dah-wils], Semeuse [Say–mōōs], Wanshee [Wān-she] – who with my narrator and with Zarathustra and Siddhartha (based loosely on historical figures) live throughout the work.  All are intended as archetypes.  I hope they are true to life, to the spirit of their times, and to a sense of place which, like my imagined village of Arzen, lives beyond time.  Knowledge of history will enhance your pleasure in reading Fire, but no problem need be created by names and events with which you are not familiar.

For those of you who are, in general, intimidated by poetry, DON’T BE.  These sonnets are perhaps best read as “prose,” i.e. from sentence to sentence rather than from line to line, and each stanza may be read as a separate paragraph.  I suggest you react to punctuation just as you would in reading anything else.  If you become aware of rhythms and rhymes, fine; if not, no problem.  Words such as “flower,” “power,” “tower,” and “toward,” may sometimes be heard as one-syllable, sometimes as two.

And if you’re inclined, please share your thoughts about this work and the feelings and issues it raises on the adjacent blog.

    The chapters correspond to different segments of human history:


Part One:


Part Two:

Early "Civilizations"

Part Three


Part Four:

Rome, Joshua of Nazareth, the “Dark Ages”

Part Five:

A Renaissance



Our “Modern Age”



Purchase Receptive to Fire

B Wardlaw, b@receptivetofire.com, cocacolaanarchist.com
Chris Coffey, christophercoffey@mac.com, christophercoffey.eu