I talk you talk we'll talk


May 2018

If You Love Him

If You Love Him


A song for decades

I don’t know its story

It’s sung in its own shape,

A ladder


Every verse goes higher (, higher)

The notes rise,

And we climb carefully


When we are there,

What then

We have arrived, the final rung

Our last accomplishment

Unless, like angels, we have

Assignments back


Though I don’t know how that delegating

Be transpiring



We are climbing

We are climbing

We are called soldiers

The kind that fight in a spiritual battle


The mortal consequences

Well, there might be some

But it’s the soul

That is the heart, the aim

Our campaign


Victory for heaven

And new Earth


Sing with me

No amen until it’s done


C L Couch



File:The ladder of life is full of splinters.jpg – Wikimedia Commons





I was watching a war movie

It’s Memorial Day, and so there are

Lots of war movies on

And two military guys are lighting


With a metal lighter, and

I remembered


I’ve never smoked a cigarette

And never wanted to

The smell is enough to stop me

But I always liked the smell of

The lighter

Steel and lighter-gasoline and oil

And whatever

As I watched, the lighter clicked

The smell came back to me

It’s childhood, and someone must

Have had one of those lighters

Not my father who smoked a pipe as

Pipe lighters are different

And he was just as likely to use matches

Someone, though, because today

I know that smell


I should try the lighter again

After all, a fine Pennsylvania product

The Zippo lighter

Will it smell of oil and substance,

Will it smell of memory?


I’m not sure what I’d so with such


I guess carrying around a source of


Might be a good thing

A needful thing

As prudent as memory



C L Couch




Cool Zippo Lighter Wallpapers Many HD Wallpaper



Air and Space Museum

Air and Space Museum


Light and space

It’s physics,

And it’s Arabic

It’s need

A vision helping me get by

In a crowded world

That doesn’t breathe enough

Plants to air

Us to carbon dioxide

Back to plants

It goes ‘round, and when

Done right, it’s good


I want to be at the Alhambra

Or the Alcázar

Without the Christian overparts

Not to abandon faith but

To find it in the beauty

Of healthy building


I don’t know how to reconcile

The tyranny that built it


Somehow-dimensions cast to God’s own

As if the architect had been

In Eden when

First designed

All was lush

With light and air

Imagine a veil

Blown under the arch

Of all creation, which was

The promise of


How close we might get

Toward living with life’s own

The movement

Without angels yet

To keep us out


All is green behind

After we rest, breathed upon by God

We get to go inside


C L Couch



File:Alcázar de Segovia-9.jpg – Wikimedia Commons





To understate,

The universe is huge

And there might be many of it

All around and through

Makes one wonder how matter can

Be dark as in absent

Where’s the room


But I guess dark matter is a substance

Of its own

Like tiny black holes that might be

All around as well (and through)

If so, they must be pulling matter that we know


We lose the universe we know,

And does it go to feed another

Body on another plain


And so they have such openings there

As to release their atoms

Skittering across astral dimensions

That might sometime land here


Is it all one give-and-take

And is there balance

Or is chaos confirmed

As part of the regularity, the normalcy

The paradox in making

In keeping everything together

While it all moves


It’s not covalence

It’s a dance

We all are partners

Everyone has a turn

Each one owns steps

And talent is in measure

And it’s all approved


Do you see

Whoever you are

However you’re arranged

And I can’t speak to aberrance

But someone can who calls

The dance

Does not control the steps

But gave us the hall

And bids us, as an invitation, to take part

In something wonderful


C L Couch



Honky Tonk Train Blues | recording by Lewis |


Sedimentary Thinking

Sedimentary Thinking


It is a kind of blue and kind of grey

A cloudy day

I have layers, too

The trash that needs to go out

Larger things I do not need

And someone else must take them

Then there are things I never went through after

I brought my office home

They need places and a purpose

Somewhere, if not here

Then there are things I must reach through

The others to use now

The daytime things, the usual things

Coffee cups and dishes

Some desk space

Lamplight without so many shadows from

All the extra piles

I’m used to that, living among piles

Stacks of things to use, though

It’s my file system, too

My own patriotism

I have the right to stack

If you come to call, I’d like you to take something

Away with you

Please and thank you

I will not track

Do what you like

With what you have that,

Detritus or treasure,

Used to be mine


C L Couch



Colorful layers of sedimentary rock in Makhtesh Ramon, Israel.



Transcontinental Railroad

Transcontinental Railroad


In a slow place, I wonder


I know, places are for walking

Wonder with an a, to wander, then

But the movement on the inside is

What seems to matter

The value in introspection, of hiking the

Mind on another side


Thoreauvian travel, as it were

I was told he walked to Concord often

From the pond, a matter of some


Not many

And this defined great travel to Thoreau

Because of how he trod

Through the



Pathways and passageways

That were of value to him

Through illumination


Pegging a lantern of discovery from

One part of a dark way (now lit)

Into the next


It’s like an empty railway

The bed and ballast, maybe ties


Will a set of rails

Then a train course over

Or course through

A plain, a valley, and

A tunnel


Maybe new passageways


Lacking mechanism


No timetable needed

Or requested


Ambling through the corridors instead

And hollows about discovery

‘Til a slide or lack of entryway

Makes us

Go ‘round another

Corner, a bend


Take an unmeasured angle or,

Who knows,

Set up another platform


We go

Out of order,


Or maybe all aligned


To find


The course

Or, yes, the track

Of inner life


Less taken, maybe

Maybe difficult but

Brave to try


Take it

Like the flyer (Dixie or

Overland) upon the rails



Be the kind

That must stop to rest,

Out of respect

For human crossings,

Not to freeze up at

The borders



Neither they nor you

Have to


C L Couch



Arne Hückelheim

Railway tracks in the sunset. Taken at Frankfurt Central Station.





It used to be a teacher’s

Time for other work

Some went to school, some painted

Houses, some worked in greenhouse


Some never stopped with learners

In the classroom

Some took the learning outside


Now with age and the inexorable slowing


New options must emerge

I sit and write and share

A little of what emerges from the work,

A pinhole in a tube


Is this real, too

Only creation without a



Or if I should sit still for the season,

Would that count as substance

Let alone abundance in

The universe

Or would it be

Simply in between the numbers

On the line



The calculations that matter

Only come in the fall


C L Couch



Why Try at All

Why Try at All


Is it crap,

I wonder


But I don’t think so

There’s an earnest heart somewhere

That asks an

Honest question of creation

What might we do for you?


How might we fix

Then use you better

How might we love

All your demands

The needs and cycles you must have

To realize

Before we take our measure


In fact, maybe we could work together

For a change

If you might still be for us

And open to alliance

Maybe we could be neater


Practical in the way of

Mutual prosperity


To ensure today

And a justified way into tomorrow

Reckoning the stars will

Want negotiation, too

When we go to visit and

To stay


C L Couch


The Autumn People

The Autumn People

(title and litany inspired by R. Bradbury)


World of stone

Ancient, difficult wood and sometimes glass

Though passageways for

Light and air are

Mostly shuttered nowadays


It is an age beyond the last

Ancient, classic, invasion, modern, after-modern

Mires of agenda

That refused to die

So that the next time had no name

No one after, either, to name in distant reason

This last time


In anarchy, all freedom’s lost

No one in safety alone

In groups of tribal bands

Joined for number


There is no core

Nothing on which to ride an atom or to

Split its parts


We came together as we could

Or nothing


Nothing, nothing, nothing

To have into grey days


Summer without

Winter long past to be accounted

No one remembers spring


This is what we are

This is what we left one season

Now only one time of year


Forever fallen

Ever falling


Who are we?

Once we were leaves

Attached, belonging to the binding of

The book of life


Where did we live?

In colors, living textures

On a primal world


What is left now?

Ghosts of patterns

What might have been


Why do we live?

It’s all that’s left

The spine is broken


We exist, barely assembled

What is left of

Dark matter, once

All light has been erased


The litany has ended

We return below ground

To sleep uneven with rude weapons

Close to our faces


Failing eyesight

Hands no longer trustworthy

In holding what is left

Into the evening of the Earth


C L Couch


Blog at

Up ↑