Date of Final Oral Examination (Defense)
Type of Culminating Activity
Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing
Martin Corless-Smith, Ph.D.
Kerri Webster, MFA
Rebecca Wolff, MFA
Fire Journal is the poetic diary of my own experience as a wildland firefighter. More deeply than any news article, it confronts firsthand the issue that, in this ongoing climate crisis, as the fire season extenuates and intensifies, there are fewer firefighters willing to make the commitment. Situated between personal and professional suicides, the journal preserves a process of grieving which accepts change as promise of future living. And what changes more quickly, more unpredictably than a wildfire? In actual service against disaster, the journal explores human defense against one of the most climactic ecological experiences our earth has capacity for as metaphor for the journey of love and loss. And the love of a fire family, a love unlike any other – in which near strangers swear to defend each other’s lives – is tested with exhaustion, sleep deprivation, and the power struggles borne of any individual’s sense for self-protection. The account includes interviews I’ve recorded with my crew on the fireline. This is the journal of a journalist; but with greater feeling…it is the subjective account of discomfort, struggle, and desire in one of the most dangerous and unimaginable professions of our time by a woman with a great capacity for witness.
Jenner, Lillian, "Fire Journal" (2022). Boise State University Theses and Dissertations. 1933.