Thursday, November 5, 2009

New Poetry from Jess...

She continues to be amazing!

Girl in Therapy Session

I am in deep depression,
everything in my life is a mean lesson
I'm listening but my thoughts are far away
searching for a place of peace where they can stay
My heart hurts with disappointment
My face dry from tears
My body trembles with every moment
Surrounded by my fears
Fears that life will never change

and happiness out of range;
That life, love, freedom, never will come to me
and all my thoughts lost dreams.
I sit here writing
this terrible tale
as my body keeps writhing, my throat whales

I am in deep depression,
I think I'll talk about death in the next session

My Father

You promised me his love; the love I've never had.
You promised me his smile, and I wanted it so bad.
So I took your hand in marriage, hoping for the best,
And for years you filled the void that was always in my chest.
But one day you were late, and at that moment I knew my fate.

I would inherit my mothers place at the window,
looking for you, looking for him.
Knowing all that was there was gone right then,
When you became him;
My nightmare, my demon, my father.

Jessica R. Couch, 15

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Poet, Jessica Couch

Hey Guys,

I have the most amazing sister. She is smart, witty, and since she was 14 (last year) she has been amazing me with some pretty complex and engaging poetry. With her love for pastry design, food, and now boys, she has transformed the things that she reads, hears, and does into some thoughtful word choices and poetic stanzas. Here are some examples of her work. Leave a comment and tell me what you think. Should she continue to write?

The Whisperer

You whispered sweet nothings in my ear
You told me all was well; no need to fear
I was yours and you were mine,
But that was somewhere down the line

You shushed me and smoothed my wrinkled brow,
And yet we worked it out somehow,
But that was then and this is now.

You whispered sweet romance in my ear
You told me, 'hold on', the future was near
With feet on the ground, I settled down
And became your adoring wife.
While low and behold,
I put on hold,
What could have been my life.

You whispered sweet nothings in my head
That 'though love is young, people grow old'
And at once, I'm alone in bed.
With steel gray hair, and crow's feet eyes
I whisper thoughts to the dead

But that was then and this is now,
And I've forgiven you for not warning me somewhow.

I've started back what could've been my life,
But I'll always be known as the sweet whisper's wife.

The Perfect Girl

Intellect is your skill,
Kindness is my type.
You have both of those qualities,
And that's what makes you right.
And another thing
That I like about you,
Is that you are patient,
And that's a good thing too.
Patience shows kindness
And kind you remain.
And that's why I tell you
No other girl is the same.
I hope you like this poem
And I'm sad we're apart
So the only thing I can give you,
Are the words from my heart
I Love You


Looking out from the barred windows,
I long to find a home;
A place where I can stay, but also free to roam.
I look and see the world go by,
But as I look I my spirits die.
I'm caged like some pet, sans fresh air,
wanting to feel the ground beneath me,
wanting life to be fair.


The city was quiet
And death was lingering.
The mourning doves
Were moaning their sad cry,
As they witnessed death go by.
The dogs were barking,
shouting at the wind.
The winds were howling
Screaming, "Heaven! Was this the end!?"
All the elements noticed death had come and gone,
But did you even know you were dead?

Before The Morning

The air was crisp,
the sun was down,
so I took a risk
to search the unfound;
To see past these four misplaced walls;
to roam the night and see it all;
to search and find who I am.
For in the morning,
these walls are bars.
So tonight, I must go see the stars.

The Fun they Had

why can't I love me
why do I care about how people see me
And why do I believe them
Why cant they see what I see
whats so wrong
why cant I belong
I know I'm better than this
I'm the one they're going to miss
but why do feel im just telling myself this
It's true, I'm tired of feeling bad
And the worst part is, I'm the one that's making me mad

Puppet Strings

Her mind was full of dreams
But far from reality they had seemed
She had no companions
No need for earthly things
But only wanted freedom from what she felt were puppet strings
She closed her eyes and she was gone
Cast into her dreams where her life suddenly begun
Running up the hills, staring at the sun
but foolishly she opened her eyes and it was done
she felt her puppet strings
she cried for these were earthly things
she closed her eyes and wished the dream would soon begin
but never will her dreams come true again

Jessica Couch, 15

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Who's Turn to Talk? Agriculture Communication 101

Hi, I'm Joe, the plumber; easily influenced by movies, music, media and Mom. The question is, "If Joe the Plumber wants information about where his food comes from, how it is produced, and who is profiting from it, where does he go for the education?" In the recently released trailer for the upcoming movie "Food, inc.", over two minutes is spent convincing you that upon inside you will find an fact-filled, hard look into the deep recesses the agricultural chamber of secrets. And who is there to tell them that they have it all wrong? Do they have it all wrong? When only side is talking, even with shaky facts and weak conclusions, a debate is very easily won.

The problems that Agriculturists will have to face in the near future is communicating a clear and unified message about what really happens from the farm to the fork. With the population and urban sprawl covering good farmland with houses and parking lots, the industry has had to become more efficient; growing more food on less land. However, where are the cheering vegetarians and the parade processions over the battles won against food insecurity and poverty. The United States maintains the cheapest and safest food supply in the world. Unfortunately, the unsung heroes are in labs and fields making improvements while all the talking is done by the omnivores with dilemmas.

I recently sat in a 300 student class at Michigan State University. It was titled the sociocultural aspects of food. A group of students were in front singing the praises of the Organic foods that they undoubtedly "Googled" to a point of relative proficiency. It wasn't until I started asking questions that their seemingly open and shut presentation became house built on a sandy foundation. It wasn't their fault that they utilized what they read and heard to make a presentation. Heck, only one side is writing and talking in a way that Joe can understand. So when All-American Joe, the plumber wanders into a movie theater this summer with his wife, kids, and large popcorn, who is going to tell them that the chickens and peanut butter aren't to be confused with weapons of mass infection? Will there be a rebuttal trailer or movie that is just as convincing? So far, one has yet to be seen.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Potential Success

Today, I want to discuss your potential. We ask ourselves daily if we have reached our maximum potential. We quantify and measure our achievements and failures against our calendars, syllabi, to-do lists and outlines to see if we have accomplished our goals. We are bothered with the notion that we have not started our Christmas lists, assignments, lab reports, and other projects. While in my freshman year, sitting in an inorganic chemistry lecture, I remember learning about the “rate determining step”, which is the slowest step in a chemical reaction. If you have a chemical that explodes at 300 degrees Fahrenheit, then the absence of heat keeps the explosion from ever happening. Those chemicals we refrigerate, adorn with caveats and labels, remove possible heating elements and oxidizers, and train those that work with them to practice safe handling techniques. We do these things because once the reactants rise from 299 to 300, and the reaction begins, nothing will stop it until it is complete. Recently, I just returned from a trip to Indianapolis, Indiana. This concept of potential reminds me of the NASCAR Indy 500. All the fans, with their popcorn and cokes, are in the stands. The cars, with their freshly waxed frames, are revving their turbo engines at the starting line, but the man with all the power is the guy up on the platform with the gun raised in the air. Until he fires that round, the track will remain free from the sounds of screeching tires and the smells of burning rubber. Everything waits for him, like the reaction waits for the thermometer to read 300 degrees. What can this mean about our own potential? Does it sometimes feel as if there is someone out there, handling you with extreme care and polyurethane gloves or standing over you with a raised gun and a high platform, keeping you from starting down your own track toward success? The pivotal questions are: If the reaction happens or the race begins, are you equipped to handle the consequences? Have you cleared a space in your house? Where will you put your trophy? Take inventory of your life. What’s holding you back may not always be your lack of preparation for your goals, but for resulting success.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Our Carrying Capacity

Our kidneys are master filtration systems, processing about 200 quarts of blood each day to remove wastes and excess water.1 Glucose, the result of carbohydrate and some protein digestion, is the simple sugar that enters our blood stream and provides us with energy. In basic physiology, I learned of the Tm, which stands for the maximum capacity of the kidney’s transporters to process “dirty” blood and return “clean” blood to the blood stream. When the body is functioning properly, the kidneys normally reabsorb all of the glucose through these transporters and allow it reenter the blood stream, while removing all of the wastes to be excreted as urine. Although the kidneys are incredibly efficient, there is a limit to the amount that the kidneys can reabsorb. For example, in a person with poorly controlled diabetes, high blood sugar levels can stress the kidney’s transporters, causing them quickly reach and exceed their maximum transporting potential. Like trying to take a drink from a fire hose, not all of the glucose can be reabsorbed and is discarded as waste in the urine with other filtrates. Glucose is like our potential and what we have learned through the course of our lives. Many of the complex ideas, thoughts, lectures, presentations, sermons, and other information that we “digest” get broken down into forms that our minds can actually apply in our everyday lives. In the circulation of our thoughts, these glucose-like cognitions circulate until they can be used to guide us while seeing and doing. Unfortunately, though sometimes in our youth we rebel against it, there is a limit to the amount that we can do. Simply, there is a limit to the amount of potential we will have the time or resources to retain and make use of. Especially under the stress of cramming, intense studying, and heavy workloads, our cognitive glucose gets filtered and we lose some in the sea of forgetfulness. A really interesting thing about the body is that there are systems that function with or without insulin, a hormone that allows some tissues to utilize glucose. These can represent the things that you affect your safety and personal well being. For example, when you touch a flame or hot surface, it burns and you don’t touch it again. So what has the priority in your life? What do you refuse to forget? What keeps you sane? Start here! this is the beginning of finding your passions. Passions are those things you can’t live without. Whether or not you know you need them, they define you.