Rich Murphy’s award-winning poetry reflects his wide and eclectic reading of the work of others. As a poet, he has read voraciously, and when he was young he attempted various styles of writing poetry. Growing up in Boston in the 1960s, he started by imitating Robert Lowell; he also tried his hand at Robert Bly, W.H. Auden, and Wallace Stevens. He continues to read the poets of that era as well as more contemporary writers, and he will draw on this generous background in reading and commenting on your writing, whichever way it is developing.
Rich brings a sympathetic ear to your writing, and his comments are supportive no matter your level or style. Writers leave our sessions excited to write with new tools for language. In a nurturing and empowering environment, writers will be given the opportunity to play with the art of poetry.
As for his own poetry writing, his passion for language begins with irony and metaphor. He takes language seriously so that he can have fun with it, while provoking thinking from himself and readers. He often wakes at night, letting his poetry and prose grow in the space between the conscious and unconscious. Poetry is not a career for him. Poetry is his daily life and has been since he was a teen.
Rich lives in Marblehead, MA, where he has a studio dedicated to small group workshops. With several decades of teaching and coaching writers, Rich continues to have supportive contact with former students and writers. He works with writers of English as far away as Iraq via email.
As for Rich’s attitude toward work, he doesn't “sell” anyone anything. He wouldn't “buy” anything anyone tries to sell him. He has done a lot of reading, focusing, thinking, and writing to move to the margins of manipulated mainstream thinking—to imagine becoming free of what Lame Deer calls the “windowless prisons” where many still live. He is only now seeing possibilities for what possibilities may be. But he knows distraction when it is near and avoids it. Time is short on this planet.
Rich’s poetry credits include
Americana (Press Americana, 2013) winner of the Prize Americana. Co- published by the Institute for American Studies and Popular Culture, an “institute committed to creative writers as creators of culture and recorders of crucial ideas and important cultural moments.”
In the book Poetry Train America, his poetry is described: “His poetry will make you think and think. Whimsy and maturity intertwine.” You can read some of his poetry online by following these links. Keep in mind that he is an eclectic reader of other people’s styles, and supportive and helpful at all levels of careers.