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Easter

Easter Saturday

(x = space)

x

x

Easter Saturday

x

I think it might be

Easter Saturday

On someone’s calendar,

The week having begun,

You know,

With Easter Sunday

x

But now the bunnies

That lay eggs

Must return to their

Warrens of marvels

While the quotidian battle over

How much chocolate

Resumes

x

Many-colored eggshells

Will be swept away

With plastic grass

Found throughout the house

‘Til Christmas

x

As for Easter in our hearts

I’m not sure what

To say:

I hope we have it

As a feeling and an impulse

That doesn’t have to be

The Christian way

But simply good

Like contentment sighs

At the end of day

x

Before then,

Worn out from trafficking

In virtue—

Yes, I said it

x

It exists

In certain texts of the past,

I know

x

Better still, inside-outside

Now,

Which works out because

Now is what we have

And all we have

x

C L Couch

x

x

Photo by Sandy Millar on Unsplash

x

Saga

(x = space)

x

x

Saga

x

How could one approach the tomb

The great stone pushed aside,

The guards dispersed

And not think

Something awful

Maybe tactical

Has happened?

x

To carry spices for another chance

To see the body that

Once housed the spirit

Loved in life

To hope the guards would help

Them get inside

x

Stories vary

As they do,

But what is known by all

Is that he was not there

And did an angel

Or himself

Appear to tell

The first page

Of another story,

A new following

An invitation

To believe

To love, again

Once and forever?

x

Angel or gardener

Or Christ himself appeared

The first day of a new week

After the Jewish sabbath

Followed by the faithful

x

And what should happen next

But ages of crimes

For the new religion

Egos and errors

Chastising opinions,

Doctrinal matters?

x

The movement thankfully

Still moves

With time to get it right

No universal way

Except for universal fondness

Of each other

And the stranger

x

Still pondering

With too much inaction

Over the debate

Who is my neighbor?

x

Good Christians, all, rejoice

Love this day

And each other

And the stranger

Love because

God tells us to

And in God’s perfection

Translated to mortality

For a while,

Our hope is in an Easter morning

Quiet, dark, bearing

An opportunity for faith

x

Rejoicing, cries

Reasons to have faith

And celebrate

An Easter morning, day,

And night when it will once again

Be quiet

For our souls

And into Monday morning

When

Secular time takes over

And we live in faith

Inside a spirit

All our spirits

Breathing in the air

Of thanksgiving and

Holy opportunity

x

A life of faith

And love

In all imperfect, broken

Forms and functions,

A life in which to say

Thank you

I love you

To God and then each other,

Easter morning inspired

x

C L Couch

x

x

Photo by Oumaima Ben Chebtit on Unsplash

Chefchaouen The Blue Pearl شفشاون الجوهرة الزرقاء, Chefchaouen, Morocco

old door

x

Who Wins

(x = space)

x

x

Who Wins

x

An empty room

Where there might have been a meal

Smell the hope and then the fear

And here’s a garden

Pretty

There was violence here

Now the plot is done,

Everything realized

x

Another foe

Who sought to shift the blame

From Rome to us

Our need to have an enemy

To stoke our places

In tradition

x

The others should be caught

The followers

No hurry

The serpent is now headless

Only nerves remain

x

The world has won

And we are glad

Our own strategy to overthrow

Goes back into a box

In which there is less silver

To count

x

An easy price

To pay

For indolence

Now back to lethargy

We have time

And everything is scheduled quiet

Scheduled noise

Again

x

C L Couch

x

x

Photo by Daniel Katz on Unsplash

Masada

Lookout through ancient Masada building.

x

Good for Someone

(x = space)

x

x

Good for Someone

x

He cried out,

Then death was quiet

Silencing everything

At last

x

And was there keening,

I think so

For a time

Then silence imposed

By Jerusalem,

By Rome

x

The Earth exhausted,

Unknowing  silence

That was a matter of salvation:

Now we say not dead

But sleeping

x

Sin is quiet

For a time

(for three days)

Waiting

Wondering about

What will happen next,

What it should

Do

x

Sin awaits

A guideline

Now that

God is dead

x

Should there be smirking

Or a party by

The gates of hell

While Earth

And all humanity must wait,

Though we must think it’s over

Why might we think

Something new

Should happen now?

x

We forget our stories

Let go all prophecy

We had our

King for a day

The welcome of a hero

Who has died with open wounds

Somehow bleeding

For the rest of us

New ritual

Or sacrifice of old

x

A burial is proper,

If hurried

To be done by sunset,

Sunset all;

Wounded and sleeping

Earth is covered over

With a stone,

Setting a guard to

Keep it all that way

x

Cruelty is tired

Everything must sleep

For a while, now

x

C L Couch

x

x

Photo by kyle larivee on Unsplash

New England, USA

it seemed like mother nature wanted to spotlight this fellow

x

In Antioch

(x = space)

x

x

In Antioch

x

I walked by the campus

A few times

While visiting

In Yellow Springs

x

I didn’t belong there

Though I wish I could:

A progressive place,

Sometimes angry

Famously

But with tradition

And understanding

Of good doctrine

x

I’d like the hope

Of being there

In this week my sect

Calls holy

On a dark day

‘Cause the sun has gone away

x

In Antioch,

They were first called Christians

Rather than followers

Of the Way

x

The Way might have been

Better,

Less restrictive,

More inviting

x

Not a club but a direction,

Not a t-shirt

But sandals and a walking stick

For all the deserts

Whose borders

We might come upon

x

C L Couch

x

x

Actions of the Apostles 11:26 (Christian New Testament)

x

Antioch College, Yellow Springs, Ohio (USA)

x

By Bernard Gagnon – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=12045971

Ancient Roman road located in Syria which connected Antioch and Chalcis.

x

The Bridge to Thursday

(x = space)

x

x

The Bridge to Thursday

(Holy Week)

x

It is the middle of Holy Week

Who’s noticing

Who cares

Those huddled in churches

Mouthing with the pastor

Liturgies and litanies

All the holy words

And since it’s near enough

To Lent, there might be no

Communion,

Even practicing for Easter

x

Some of the fun churches

(there are those)

Will bless baskets on Saturday;

All sorts of folk with

All sorts of baskets

Containing elements for

Sunday dinner

Will be there

x

On the Friday before,

There will veneration

While on Thursday

An official working out

Of some kind

For the Last Supper

And the “maundy” part

Of Maundy Thursday

A command (mandatum)

To love one another,

Good reminder

For starting out the Triduum—

Or the rest

Of one’s

Of a church’s life

x

But today is Wednesday

Nothing to see here

Or hear or taste or touch

No smell of

Incense, either

Wednesday doesn’t rate

Another hump day

In the USA,

Anywhere else that arches

The week that way

x

Calm before the storm?

Hardly

There are storms, here and there

As happen

(one is brewing

outside the window),

There are the hungry

Who need big pieces of baked bread

And safe water

And more-real food

In order to sit up

Straight in church

For the coming days

x

Feed the children

Feed each other

This would make a Wednesday, a

Holy Wednesday in a holy week

x

C L Couch

x

x

Photo by yvo bergers on Unsplash

Maastricht, Nederland

x

Looks

(x = space)

x

x

Looks

x

Pale sky

As if in compromise

To give late-winter earth

A chance to show itself

Turning slowly

Into spring

x

C L Couch

x

x

Photo by Biegun Wschodni on Unsplash

Blooming saffrons in the mountains.

x

Slowdown Season

(x = space)

x

x

Slowdown Season

x

Lent could mean

Anticipation,

If we would allow for that

In the midst of conversations

About sacrifice

x

Having given up

On chocolate, we need

Something to talk about

How about why?

x

Sacrifice for its own sake

Being good,

Don’t get me wrong

Though we can

Say more

About the season

About church

About reading

About us

x

Lent means getting ready

Or it might

Lest we forget

Why we gave up the chocolate

Or the coffee

Or, I don’t know,

What do people give up

Nowadays?

(maybe screen time)

x

It seems we give up

Something somewhat bad

Somewhat good

Maybe it’s the excess

We surrender,

Which a good ancient Greek

Will say

Is always good

A lifestyle to adopt

x

Well, we’re not here

To parse

We’re here, in fact, because

We’re unified

We want one thing

Even if delivery

Is holiday disarray

x

We want a happy Easter

With rabbits

And eggs

(rabbits who lay eggs)

And back to chocolate

Like a former friend

Now reconciled

x

There is more

But it’s not mine to say

You must, must not

It is yours to say

To own a resurrection

Shown in nature

Told as story

A question and an answer

Of belief

It’s yours to say

x

C L Couch

x

x

Photo by Vidar Nordli-Mathisen on Unsplash

Walk the Line

x

The Return of the Ring

The Return of the Ring

(Easter 2020)

 

1

 

When the ring is cast into

Mount Doom, however

Accidentally, and the designs

Of the Dark Lord are done

(however accidentally),

Then everything on Middle-

Earth is turned over—for the

Better, to be sure

 

But how many things will

Need to be remade?  Certain

Friends are gone, too many

 

Heroes will rule now from afar

Those in homes not made

Of stone will have to rebuild

And refugees will need

To find their way

 

New associations will be needed

New rings of friends, and in

The rings will go perforce new

Ways of thinking that should

Go in more easily, from then on

 

2

 

It’s a day like any other

Above my head the sky is pale,

The sun trying to shine more

Beatifically

 

We make this day

In remembrance, celebration

Like a birthday

Or the celebration at the end of Ramadan

 

Is the Earth newly invested?

Is it cleaner, less hollowed-out by

Profiteering?—well, maybe a little or some

Today, when and where it’s been made

A holiday from

Such occupations along with the more

Mundane, acceptable kinds

Also on holiday

 

There is still blood on the cross,

However; no time or age

Can wash it clean

There is a chamber, carved out for

A tomb and used by someone else,

Which will never be emptier

Than when the stone was rolled

Away, than now

 

Yes, some things are supernal

Maybe there’s greater quiet on the land

Jews, Hindus, and Muslims might

Enjoy it as provided by their

Christian neighbors, friend or foe

 

3

 

So it is a day forever

And it’s only today

With the merging of the ordinary into

Realities ineffable

 

The pope will preach at vigil’s end

This year to an empty room

But not an empty planet

There will be an audience

(popes always have audiences),

This one planetary-wide

With who knows listening from another

Cosmic ring

 

The Baptists will get in on this

Even the chilly Presbyterians, boot-

Strapped by their own order

Methodists will have the

Chance,

Deserving if for no other reason than

Having saved my mother

 

After the regulars and the Anabaptists

(who are not normal in pacificity,

n’est-ce pas?),

All the other groups

All groups chime in,

For it is a time of chimes

The way Italians serenade each other

From the open edge of windows

And of balconies

With the signs that DIY-ers have assembled

And displayed in honor of

First-responders

 

Ring out Easter day

There is news

That’s always new

There is hope in the world and

All worlds

 

If you believe—

No pixie dust required—then

Jesus Christ has risen today

For you

For us

For all

Belief is not incumbent on the fact

Of resurrection

In irascible loving, starting somehow

In the garden,

It’s up to each of us

But believe or not, salvation’s

At your home

 

Regardless (sorry, I won’t be

presuming),

Here is a day

The one we have

If and as possible,

As decided,

To let pass or

To cry, to laugh, to sing, to mourn

Ordinary living, extraordinarily

 

C L Couch

 

 

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

 

 

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