I talk you talk we'll talk



Mystic Coffee

(x = space)



Mystic Coffee


What does God say


Not in the mystic sense

Or way

That I do not understand

Bur in a parochial,

Five-senses fashion

Over the sink

Or at the table

In front of this machine

Not to take over

As in a speculative episode

Simply to be here

I could try to keep

The holy fear

At bay

In order to entertain

If only with companionship

Unless God would like

Some coffee

Or cold water


Maybe so

Maybe God would like

Coffee or some water

In water, there are so many


Though water can be water, too


As for coffee

It has been created

And remade

(we may ask how)

And so also has provenance


The day, the day

The hour

Without counting

We are here

God speaks

I listen

God asks me questions

Though God knows;

Shall I say anything,

I would not know


Maybe this is mystic

My senses would be frozen

Like the frost before the sunrise

God is God

Though God could warm me

I could try to talk,

Be thankful for

The perfect listening


C L Couch



Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash



(x = space)





Should the

Spirit lead

Should an angel say

So that we rest into


From listening


Pointers of direction

For the way

This is a response from prayer

Or simple stillness

Being still

Into the world, into night

Into the quiet blue of day


Whatever time

To step outside

To step inside

Creation’s bands

The movement of the universe

Let it ride

For us

For a while


We rest within

We rest without

We try to listen with disinterest

(not un-interest)

For a while


If we get something

It’s a gift

Treat with care

Treat with confidence

Now get up

Carrying the lightness of a gift

Into the world again

Into time

(kairos into chronos)

Into hours of the day and night

Into chores

Into decisions

Into life

Into peace

Or needs be war


Not worrying a win

But plainly things are better

If no new rewards

Maybe a win for all


C L Couch



Photo by Aaron Huber on Unsplash


The Hour

(x = space)



The Hour


When I met with

My spiritual director,

He’d light a light

Between us

For our consideration

A flame that moved

That might have made a noise

Though we couldn’t hear it


It was our time to talk

But we’d be quiet


That was good

That was good tension

That was coaching

From the universe:

To be quiet for a time,

To give better time to listen

When it was time

To talk


C L Couch



Photo by Brian Gomes on Unsplash





God speaks

Through storm

And through the rising flower


For the goodness

And, if it has to be, chastisement

Before all love returns or

So it seems

From a place it never left

The human will and mind and spirit

Love of all

Excelling loves

Perfection so near

In moving water and the fire that for now

Is contained

Inside dissolution

Ruin or old age

Waiting for will to turn so that

The paradox

The ears to hear will hear


C L Couch



Photo by Ganapathy Kumar on Unsplash

Comet NEOWISE seen from Rio Rancho in New Mexico, USA.


Notebook Poems with Psalms 34 and 35

Notebook Poems (while downstairs)

with Psalms 34 and 35


Three O’Clock or Thereabout


train sounds out back

from the first floor


deep, uneven thrumming

circles of wheels

train sirens cry and split the local sky

nostalgically, we might still call that

a whistle


after time, train finishes with us

our cars may go

ebb and flow returns to town

until Moses-like the tide of trains

halves us again




child at table works

lead pencil scratches paper

timely task now done


Psalm 34

a song of tears



hear my cry

and when I’m through

hear my chafed whispering


Psalm 35

song with a question


Lord, are you there

it’s not Margaret of the book

it’s simply unwritten me


Machine-Less Listening


I hear a trumpet call


(two bits a quarter from

pieces of eight)

Gabriel’s apprentice practices

for the final fanfare

at the end of school in June




at table round I write

who knew Arthur should meet here

liege folk

talking of charity

T. H. White’s “Might for Right”

until Mordred and Lancelot

ruin everything

The Word, the Life for Love

The Word, the Life for Love
(14 February 2016)

Valentine gave his life for love
Christ gave it back

Messages of faith sent with
New ones returned
Sacrifice and service
Hearing and listening

Even when afraid

What may I do you for to say
I love you on Valentine’s

In a way that you might
Hear because I’ve borne
The word to give
To you now

Even in new ways

A gift that has no investment
No interest to accrue
Beyond selfless satisfaction
That you might love me
In return

Writing Prompt [response]: Do you think that it is important to share? Describe in detail another way for you and others to share–to give to people around you.

“there are ways that others need our presences, too”

“in reality, we throw gold mines into the trash”

by Jacki Kellum

Do you think that it is important to share? Describe in detail another way for you and others to share–to give to people around you.

Presence as Presents

by C L Couch

On this Thanksgiving, I won’t be with family. I’ll be dining with neighbor friends. And I’ll be cat-sitting for other friends who will be away enjoying a family reunion of sorts.

I’ll be bringing nothing to my own activities except myself, my choice, and time. I will feed the cats then visit with them, and they will ignore me. I will sit with my neighbors, enjoying the company of children and of parents. Then I will go home, alone.

When others do this—providing nothing but themselves—I call this the ministry of presence. (So do others, too.) When I used to work with youth, I surprised my ignorance of talent with an asset of simply being there. I didn’t what to say to youth, then discovered that wasn’t the important part. The important part was reliable company. Youth needed to know that someone, ideally someone without an agenda, would be there this time and probably the next.

So that’s how I share. And I imagine how anyone can. I will say that I’m a trained and active listener, which helps in interaction of any kind—even with indifferent cats. But if anyone shows up without self-preoccupation and then maybe shows up the next time. Well, that’s sharing. That’s even ministry.

Yes, I guess it means going beyond merely eating food and watching the game. But not much more. Talk with those, a little, who are there. More importantly, listen to what anyone has to say.

So Happy Thanksgiving to the relatively inert, as I will be. Happy presence to all. And, to all, a could night.

(image credit, from Google Images)

Create a free website or blog at

Up ↑