Jim Murray

4 years ago · 4 min. reading time · visibility 0 ·

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The Things You Gladly Do For Your Kids


My daughter whose name is Star, (nee Charlotte, seen here with her old man, Ben),  was recently diagnosed as bi-polar. This is a tough thing for a writer to be and and even tougher thing for a young writer with her first publishing contact in place and a novel to edit.
She has been forcing herself to do a lot of writing, poetry mostly, even if only to exorcise here demons and actually prove to herself on a daily basis that she can still string a bunch of words together and have them make sense.
Late in may she announced a poetry challenge to her Facebook friends of whom I am one, of course. So to be a supportive dad, I agreed to write an original poem every day for the month of June.
I just posted the last one this morning as did she. I can't show you any of here stuff, because she wants to submit them to various places that won't accept stuff that's already been published. So you will just have to settle for some of my favourites.
It; hurts like hell to know that your child has a condition like this, and that it is really screwing with her career. But she has incredible support from her whole family and she also has a bunch of very good friends, and a husband who is crazy about her.
She has recently just been accepted into a medical therapy group, and feels very good about that. And she's taking as good care of herself as she can. But it is what it is and as sad as it is, she's just got to be strong.
If you would like to read some of her poems you can find her on Facebook under Star Spider.


I do not have a poem today

Seems all my thoughts have flown away

Like eagles in search of easier prey

I do not have a poem today

I do not have a poem in my head

It feels like my thoughts are still in bed

Sleeping the sleep of the truly dead

I do not have a poem in my head

I do not have a poem for you

But I do know one thing that is true

I read your poems and bleed inside

And pray your pain will soon subside

I do not have a poem today

But I do send a father’s love your way

I know you are stronger than you sometimes feel

I know the pain is all too real

But I will hope and I will pray

That time will heal your wounds some day

And you’ll be that crazy girl once more

And leave behind this internal war

I do not have a poem today


I write to let the demons deep inside me out to play

I write just like the dog who demands to have his day

I write until I feel my aging wounds being to heal

I write until my hands become unstuck from the driving wheel

I write when the sun goes down and all the world has gone to bed

I write to clarify the crazy notions in my head

I write to make myself feel something, anything at all

I write to answer all the ghosts that nightly come to call

I write to build my words into a house of brick and stone

I write to keep myself from feeling lost and all alone

I write because I always have and likely always will

I write because I have no choice…it is my only skill


Little bits of my heart

Some are scattered all over town

Little bits of my soul

Some are smiling some wear a frown

Little bits of the highs I once felt

Are falling to the ground

Little bits of regret sometimes haunt me

But I am still around


At the end of the day

My thoughts drift away

Through a sky so blue

Through a cloud so grey

And they travel forever

Without rhyme or reason

To a far distant place

To a fine summer season

And as I watch them fly

So free and so light

The end of the day

Just turns into night

Then my thoughts, they return

To people my dreams

They are the stitches

That sew my loose seams

And I wake the next morning

With ideas galore

And a whole day to make them

Whatever and what for


Perfection is your master

And you choose to be its slave

Come hell or high water

Perfection nips at your heels

Like some tiny persistent terrrier

Driving you towards the slaughter

Perfection is a moment of clarity

In a world engulfed in fog

Obscuring memories of your past

Perfection promises the moon

Forces you into exhaustion

And then takes you nowhere fast

Perfection is the one pure thought

That escapes you in a heartbeat

Never ever to return

Perfection is the crystal moment

When you give into your frailty

And your senses start to burn

Perfection is a piercing echo

In a cave of screaming banshees

Who have you nailed you to the cross

Perfection is the lonely tear you shed

Over all the joy and sorrow

That will be your eventual loss


The real poets

Don’t sit around in some cheesy coffee shop

Scribbling in a dollar store notebook

The real poets

Are not the angst ridden hipsters

Who could never please their fathers

The real poets

Don’t lead inspiring seminars

On Shakespeare versus Dylan

To the nouveau illiterate

The real poets

Are on the phone at 3am

Wondering if this notion they have

Is a thing than can help the world

The real poets

Are dressing wounds

In some hospital emergency room

Or on some battlefield somewhere

The real poets

Are working 24/7

To keep the status quo

From sinking to the point

Where it eats all of us alive

The real poets

Are too busy taking things

To the next level

To spend time reflecting

On how shitty the old level can be

The real poets

Are baking bread at 6 am

Over on the Danforth

The real poets are sitting

On the beach

Marvelling at the sunrise

With ideas bubbling in their heads

The real poets

And driving their kids to ballet

And karate and soccer practice

And loving every minute of it.

The real poets

Could not write a poem

If you held a gun to their head

The real poetry

Is the everyday living

The constant caring

The love you share

With the people you love

The love you receive


The real poets

Are the givers

And the real poetry

Is the gift of receiving


This is the last poem that I spin

June is out July is in

I learned a lot about myself

I learned even more about someone else

I feel the pain she feels each day

I pray that pain will go away

But pain is with us all I fear

It’s part of what makes pleasure so dear

And so I wrap this in a bow

I will keep writing poems you know

But not at such a breakneck pace

I’m getting too old for this kind of race

I’m going to bed now, I’m all pooped out

A month of poems turned me inside out

But I’ll live to write some more I know

And you will too, through the highs and lows

‘Cause we both know, that’s how it goes

The end.


All content Copyright 2017 Onwords & Upwords Inc. All rights reserved.

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Lisa Gallagher

4 years ago #5

The love for your daughter shines like a bright star. Thank you for sharing. Its great to read about all the unconditional support. Best wishes to you and your daughter. Ps: The poetry was an extra special read.

Laurent Boscherini

4 years ago #4

Thank you Jim Murray for sharing your priceless poetry so uplifting to feel your sensitive touch of that unconditional benevolence.

Pascal Derrien

4 years ago #3

thanks for this PRECIOUS share :-)

Gert Scholtz

4 years ago #2

Jim Murray Super-talented poetry. My best wishes to you and to Star.

Phil Friedman

4 years ago #1

Hang in there, Star. For you have a talent -- which is all too rare.

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