A Fire to Light Our Tongues: Texas Writers on Spirituality brings together the works of writers in Texas. The title is taken, with permission, from Naomi Shihab Nye’s introduction to Salting the Ocean: 100 Poems by Young Poets, where she states the role of poetry serves as “a fire to light our tongues.” This view describes the role that creative writers, encountering the challenges of this past decade, face as they grapple with shifting views of spirituality. While the project started before COVID-19, given the current worldwide pandemic, a book of creative work responding to writers’ spirituality could not be more timely. This anthology offers readers creative works by Texas writers as they wrestle with evolving systems of belief or nonbelief.
ELIZABETH JOAN DELL, an émigré from Virginia, has lived in central Texas long enough to raise children and call it home. Fiction editor of this anthology, she is a senior lecturer in the English Department at Baylor University, where she teaches literature and creative writing and serves as Literature Program Director. She is coeditor with Joe B. Fulton of American Literary Cultures: A Reader. DONNA WALKER-NIXON, a native Texan, attended a two-room school outside of Stephenville, where she dreamed of growing up to teach and write. She went on to build a thirty-year career teaching English literature, composition, and creative writing at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and Baylor University. She founded Windhover: A Journal of Christian Literature and The Langdon Review of the Arts in Texas. She was lead editor of Her Texas.