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MIGRATION by Ruth Calder Murphy

Awhile ago, I wrote a poem about Certainty -mainly other people’s certainty...

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being certain, or feeling certain. Sometimes, it’s what keeps us going. The certainty that we love and are loved, the certainty that there’s hope for the future, that we can “do this” - whatever “this” might be.

I’ve come to realize, though, that certainty is only a good thing for us and everyone around us, if we’re prepared to adjust our certainties honestly, according to our  experiences and to new evidence. To live lightly, as well as deeply. Not to grasp our precious certainties and cling to them, as though they are what define reality, and our place in it, but to hold them as we’d hold an exquisite jewel - observing them from all angles and recognising the places where we’ve understood them wrongly.

I feel as though my journey has been a migration from a grasping, panicking certainty - a place where, if my certainties were proven inaccurate, my life wouldn’t be worth living - to a place where I can look in wonder at my life - at the world, the natural and the supernatural, at science, philosophy, art and humanity - and explore it from a place where I know that my perspective will shift, according to what I find. This, for me, is a more peaceful, more wonderful, more exciting place than Cold Certainty ever was. Far from excluding the marvellous and miraculous, it opens up an infinity of possibility that was never open to me before. 

Perhaps this is migration... Perhaps it’s coming home...
Painting by the author, Ruth Calder Murphy
by Ruth Calder Murphy

Migrating from the cold security
of certainty
to the heat of wonder,
I wander through market bazaars
selling suggestions
like jewels
and juggling questions
that scatter to pave the streets
with gold.

Travelling from Do As You’re Told
and Don’t Be So Bold,
to Possibility,
and The World’s Your Oyster
- from the safe cloisters of Everything Known
to the expansive horizons
of Striking Out Alone…

Migrating, I see,
where mountains rise and borders meet,
all the worlds spread out
like a cartographer's sheet -
cascading and spinning,
uncharted there beneath my dusty feet.

The Season's reeling from cold certainty
to High Summer, turning up the heat -
and I’m migrating
over land and sky and sea,
to see what I might see,
my curiosity
and me.

(Find more of Ruth's poetry in our new book! Just click here

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. This. Yes. I love this place you describe so well. "...explore it from a place where I know that my perspective will shift, according to what I find."


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