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FENCE by Ruth Calder Murphy

 There are times when we feel trapped…

Times when our rhythms, and routines, and circumstances, and beliefs, and habits seem to be stuck against a concrete ceiling and between rocks and hard places. It’s about the fact that, sometimes, in those situations, all we need to do is stretch out and decide to be free…

It is not, at all, to take away from the fact that sometimes, we find ourselves in impossible places, through no fault of our own. It’s not to underestimate the difficulties we can face when trying to break free. It is not to berate those people who feel afraid of change… It’s simply to say that actually, there are times when, however tight and uncomfortable and restrictive our circumstances or mental space or beliefs or expectations (or those of others towards us) might be, all we have to do is say, “Enough; I’m free!”

At these times, circumstances might ostensibly stay the same, but we are transformed within them, and the bars of the cage - or the locks and bolts on the door - have gone for good.

by Ruth Calder Murphy

I built a fence around myself
and painted it with tar,
attached a roof with just one space
through which I’d see one star
that rose to view at midnight,
and peeped into my box
and wondered at its smallness,
sealed up with bolts and locks.
One night, the star called out to me
down, from its midnight sky,
to join the great celestial dance,
to free myself and fly.
I frowned and said I couldn’t,
incarcerated so -
how could I break the locks and bolts
and just decide to go?
The star, it twinkled violently,
and pointed out the truth:
that I, myself, had built the fence,
and I attached the roof.
The walls and doors and locks and bolts,
though surely very strong,
were on the inside, with the key -
and had been, all along.
At any moment, I could leave;
I only had to choose
to stand and slide the locks aside -
what had I got to lose?
I stood and stretched and looked around
and knew the time was right.
The locks clicked up, the bolts flew back,
I stepped into the night.
The Earth was wide and high and deep,
the stars burned bright and free
and there between, a dancing mote:
Emancipated Me.

Ruth Calder Murphy is a writer, artist, music teacher, wife and mother living in London, UK. Her life is wonderfully full of creativity and low-level chaos. She is the author of two published novels, The Scream and The Everlasting Monday, several books of poetry and one or two as-yet unpublished novels. More of Ruth' Spiritual poetry can be found in her book, Spirit Song and the soon-to-be-released sequel, "River Song". She is passionate about celebrating the uniqueness of people, questioning the unquestionable and discovering new perspectives on old wonders. She is learning to ride the waves that come along—peaks and troughs—and is waking up to just how wonderful life really is. You can visit Ruth and view more of her art on her website, or on her writer's page on Facebook. All her books are available on Amazon, here.

~If you are interested in seeing your poetry appear in this blog, or submitting a poem by a woman that has inspired you, please click here for submission guidelines. I greatly look forward to hearing from you!~


  1. Plus the cabinets seem to be getting darker and darker much to R’s delight. The dark wood will look better with the Corian Glacier White countertop.yard fencing


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