Tag Archives: Poetry

Moon-lit Seascape



As dusk falls, the sky turns rose pink and dove grey
and the moon, a big round orange orb, rises from the sea,
through the milky clouds and shines bright,
dropping a path of shimmering silver towards us, across the sea.
A sliver of the scene lit up, as the rest recedes into darkness.
The air is filled with the rumble of waves and the damp of sea spray.

It reminds me of a painting that belonged to my granny that always fascinated me.

A moon-lit seascape with a lonely boat, barely lit.

It seemed mysterious and sad. Alien to my life experience at that time.

Such happy memories of spending time in her home,
when life seemed so simple and uncomplicated,
no big issues, fears or concerns.
Plenty of time to play, imagine, create.
The brokenness and evil of the world hadn’t invaded my little world.
Naive some would say. Blessed I guess. Protected for sure.

But now back in my current moonlit seascape
the world doesn’t seem so safe, certainly not as simple.
Sometimes I feel like that little boat in the painting.
In the dark, cast adrift, disconnected, desperate for the clarity of dawn.

And yet in my good moments I know what, or who,
is the anchor of my little boat.
The anchor which will hold me still until dawn breaks.

And I find I’m not alone in my boat after all.
Even when life feels unsafe,
when my little world is invaded
by the brokenness and evil in the big world out there,
even when I don’t understand.
God is with me in the boat
and that makes all the difference.

And so maybe I can dare
to take time to play, imagine and create again,
trusting His presence is better than an answer.


© Hilary Murdoch 2014. All rights reserved.








dependence jan 2014

Painting by Hilary Murdoch ©2014

As a paraglider depends totally on their parachute

To ensure they don’t fall;

As a boat depends totally on an anchor

To ensure it doesn’t float away;

As my body depends totally on water

To sustain health, growth, life;

As a plant depends totally on light.

As my lungs depend totally on oxygen;

Totally, utterly


Not just requesting a little help

Every now and again

An optional extra.

This is different

Without it I’m sunk

Without you I’m nothing.

But often I don’t act like it.

Do I really believe

I depend on you to that extent?

Do I lean my full weight on you God?

Trusting you fully like oxygen or a parachute?

Or do I carry my own weight

Under the illusion of independence?

But functioning under that illusion

That I am holding myself and others together

Is exhausting


Can I expose the illusion?

Dump the independence?

Embrace the reality

The peace

The comfort

The strength in weakness

The release

Of true dependence?

I want to.

God please help me

To ease my weight back into your arms


You won’t drop me.


You’ll do a better job

Than if I did it all myself.


That you’ll do immeasurably more.

The world says

Dependence is weakness


But it’s only foolish

If the person or thing you depend on

Might let you down

Or take advantage of you.

If they’re either

Not strong

Or not good.

But what if the person you choose to depend on

Is always 100% strong

Always 100% good

Will never let you down

Will never take advantage of you?

Then apparent foolishness becomes wisdom

The apparent weakness becomes strength.

I want that wisdom.

But my mind is still so soaked

In the world’s wisdom

That it’s hard for me to lean my full weight

And trust this seemingly illogical wisdom.

But there, in the choice to lean

Is where fullness of life lies.

That’s where the ‘immeasurably more’ happens

When his power is at work in us.

And then there’s control

The control which keeps a firm grip

And leaves little room for dependence on God.

It turns out I’m more controlling than I thought

And that makes all this talk of dependence uncomfortable

Let alone the active practice of it

Of letting go

Of trusting.

Admitting we need a parachute

Does not mean we are weaker than others

As if we could fall without one.

If we are all falling through life

Recognition and acceptance of a parachute

Is wisdom

Acknowledging the true situation.

Saying we don’t need one

Is remaining in denial

Dangerous denial.

But I slip into that denial so easily.

So now I want to climb out

Out of the denial

Into the reality

And seemingly illogical wisdom

Into the immeasurably more

Into the upside down strength

Of dependence

On you God.

Please show me how

Today, tomorrow

Show me how.

All poems and original writing on this blog is Copyright © Hilary Murdoch 2014

Easing gently towards the shore

Sunshine, low and orange
Stretching its last rays
Across the water
Dropping gold along the way
Interrupted by large smooth boulders
And wave sprays over them in slow motion
Throwing water high into the air.
A cool breeze passes my skin
And plays with my hair.
My breath is slowing.
All I can hear is the sea
The distant rumble of waves crashing
The closer small breakers tumbling
And the constant lapping
Not so far from my bright pink toenails.
The waves seem to be in a huge hurry
Smashing into rocks
That are insolent enough to lye in their way
Sprinting for the shore
But then slowing right down
Half hearted
As if the bus they were running for
Has pulled off without them.
A sigh of resignation
And a final collapse into the pebbles.
The sun is sinking
Easing itself under its blanket, the horizon
Snuggling down, ready for bed
Tired of the day’s exertions
Getting progressively more golden
I can look at it more directly
Although my page then has dalmatian spots
And then its gone
And it’s peachy colour leaks across the sky.
A group of birds fly overhead
Thin wings and spikey beaks
Calling to each other
9 of them
Switching places
Playing in the failing light
Not in a huge hurry
To get anywhere.
The scene speaks to me of peace
Of unhurried calm
My soul tries to follow nature’s lead
Easing gently towards the shore.
So here I am
With increasingly cold toes
Here I am
Ready for restoration
Ready for whatever you have for me, God
Ready to be held
Eager to hear, to see
Hungry for intimacy.
Wanting to move on
And yet wanting
Whatever you have for me even more.
I’m here
With you.
I’m here
With you.
All poems and original writing on this blog are Copyright © Hilary Murdoch 2014

I will be still



Photo: © Hilary Murdoch 2013

I’ve been listening to ‘I will be still’ by Young Oceans on repeat. I need to hear it. Have a listen.

It got me thinking about that phrase, so I wrote a poem about it.


it starts with me

I will

an intentional choice

I will be

presence, being not doing

I will be still

stopping – stillness in my body

trust – stillness in my emotions, my soul

peace – stillness in my spirit

and know

deep heart knowing

experiential knowing



You are God.

You are “I am”

You are who you are

Not who I think you are or want you to be

But who you are

Your presence, being you

Healer, Provider, Shepherd, Peace

The one who sees,

The one who is present.

Who you are to me now

Who you are, not what you will do

A deep knowing and experience of that ‘who’

oozes in gently

into my body, my soul, my spirit

as I


to be


Jehovah-Shammah Ezekiel 48:35  “The Lord who is present”

Psalm 46:10 “Be still, and know that I am God.”


All poems and original writing on this blog are Copyright © Hilary Murdoch 2014

A Spacious Place


table mountain 2

The light here seems brighter

The differences seem starker

Yet mingled in poverty

Hope and kindness shine

As I look to the mountain

I remember from where

My help comes.

As I look out to sea

I remember the vastness

Of His love.

This is my spacious place


There is space to breathe


My soul tells me

I am at home


All poems and original writing on this blog are Copyright © Hilary Murdoch 2013

People we need


Screen Shot 2013-06-09 at 8.43.06 PM

I want to share with you a poem written by a friend, djordan, which expresses very well, something I feel deeply.

As I read this, I think of my many friends and my family who are essential to my life but live far from me.

You know who you are.

Every so often
we find the people
we realize we have no way
of operating without… 

The rest of the poem is here.



love joy

I love people

I hate conflict

I love community

I hate exclusion

I love chocolate

I hate brussel sprouts

I love warm blankets

I hate smelly dishcloths

I love connection

I hate division

I love adoption

I hate abandonment

I love forgiveness

I hate bitterness

I love truth

I hate lies

I love light

I hate darkness

I love technology (sometimes)

I hate technology (sometimes)

I love coffee

I hate instant

I love depth

I hate pretension

I love dancing

I hate running

I love dragon flies

I hate mosquitoes

I love trust

I hate fear

I love love

I hate hate


All poems and original writing on this blog are Copyright © Hilary Murdoch 2013