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Unread 07-04-2018, 08:17 AM
Rick Mullin's Avatar
Rick Mullin Rick Mullin is offline
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Northern New Jersey
Posts: 7,754

Thanks Maryann.

I, too, which I could have been there. Even now I search through my office library for the copy of Hunters Log that Tim gave me from the trunk of his car in a parking lot in Pennsylvania.

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Unread 07-04-2018, 12:29 PM
Terese Coe Terese Coe is offline
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 7,472

Julie, Yes, those songs are balm for the soul, as is your lovely voice. Many thanks for that and your thoughtful remembrances!

Maryann, Eight hours of driving in one day is quite a haul, and I'm grateful that you went, that Bill drove, and that you were able to make a visit with all your Able Muse friends spiritually in tow. Thank you.
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Unread 07-04-2018, 02:28 PM
Robert Pecotte's Avatar
Robert Pecotte Robert Pecotte is offline
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Cavalier, ND
Posts: 633
Default Tim's Funeral

Tim's funeral yesterday, July 3rd at Saints Anne & Joachim was beautiful. Quite fittingly, the sky was overcast, and it was raining when I arrived in Fargo. Also, July 3rd is the Feast Day of St. Thomas the Apostle, the one who famously doubted the Lord's resurrection, and then solemnly declared the faith of Christians everywhere: "My Lord and My God!" A most fitting day, for Tim's funeral indeed.

Msgr. Robert Laliberte, the same who offered the Missa pro Defunctis for Alan, was the principle celebrant. ( I con-celebrated the Funeral Mass, as did the Pastor of Saints Anne & Joachim, Fr. Paul Duchschere. I estimate about between 80-100 people were in attendance (though it's hard to estimate it since Sts. A&J is a large church.)

Tim's mortal remains were cremated and carried in the procession by his beloved brother Jim Murphy.

I was blessed with the grace of proclaiming the Gospel and Msgr. Laliberte preached the homily. He built it around three words to describe Tim: Unique, Grace and Suffering.

His refection was enlightening, amusing at times and also painfully honest about Tim's struggles and his great sufferings throughout life. He praised his poetic skills, his great generosity, his service of others in the poetic craft, the sincerity of his conversion and his devotion.

In the first part of his refection based upon Tim's unique character he said some very true and funny things. He said that he had tried hard to help Tim overcome his vices and at the same time when he tried to imagine Tim without his bad habits, the Tim he knew evaporated. He also, at one point said jokingly, that when he thought about everyone he knew he didn't know of anyone who quite like Tim, or for the fact of the matter, even remotely like Tim! Which elicited quite a bit of laughter from those in attendance.

When he reflected on his second point, that of Grace, he recalled Tim's miraculous reversion to the Catholic Faith and his tenacity in maintaining that Faith despite his battle with Alcoholism. He also reflected on Alan's miraculous conversion and his translation of the Psalm's of King David as his tribute to God for the grace of his conversion. He spoke of Tim's generosity in praying for everyone he knew on a regular basis and much more.

In his third point, that of suffering, he reflected on Tim's struggle with being held up to a very high standard, even as a child, by other's and that that was a source of interior pain for him. He spoke of his having been sexually violated at an early age and how that harmed Tim immensely and caused him to leave the Faith for many decades. Msgr. said it was a priest who did this, but according to Tim it was at the hands of an older altar boy and later in life at the hands of a Jesuit novice. Which doesn't make it any better, just not factually correct (which I am certain Msgr didn't intend.) And I thought it was very appropriate and moving that Msgr Laliberte did the right thing and mentioned this, and also how Tim eventually was able to come back to the Faith through the grace and love of God. And of course, he spoke of Tim's suffering from Alcoholism and many other things.

Msgr. Laliberte wore Violet for the Mass, because it is the sign of Penance in the Church, and that Tim had lived a penitential life after his conversion, and that his final suffering from cancer was quite penitential and that Tim took it in stride and offered his suffering for his own sins, and for the sins of his loved ones. (this is known as Redemptive Suffering in the Church, which is effected through the Christian's union with Jesus Christ Crucified for the forgiveness of sins.)

During the preparation of the Altar a young man (I think he was a friend of Tim's as he was there with his family seated in a pew for the Funeral Mass) beautifully sung Alan and Seree's magnificent metrical translation (Tim Murphy's voice in my head bestowing that phrase of praise) of Psalm 27. Alan and Seree's translation follows:

Psalm 27
The Lord is my light, my salvation.
Who shall awe me?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life.
Whom shall I fear?

When the spoilers, my hateful foes,
come to consume my flesh,
they stumble and fall.

Though and army encamp against me,
I shall not be daunted.
Though war be declared against me,
I shall be unafraid.

I have asked one boon of the Lord;
I seek it still:
that I dwell in the house of the Lord
all my life's days,
beholding the Lord's resplendence,
visiting his temple.

On the day of woe,
his pavilion will conceal me.
He will hide me in his tent-flap.
He has lifted me with his might.

See! I hold my head
higher than foes around me.
Joyfully I will bring
my gifts to your abode.
I will chant and sing to the Lord.

Hear, O Lord,
The cry I voice;
have pity and answer me.

My heart adjures me:
seek out your presence.
Therefore, I yearn for you, Lord.

Hide not your visage from me,
nor banish your servant in anger.
You aided me, turn not away;
forsake me not,
my God of salvation.

When father and mother depart me
the Lord will take me up.

Instruct me, Lord, in your way;
on the level path, guide me,
for I have been hated.

Yield me not
to the will of my foes.
False witnesses
rose against me,
breathers of calumnies.

Yet I believed I would see
the good of the Lord
in the land of the living.

Wait for the Lord;
be brave; may your heart be steadied.
Wait for the Lord.

(Form: heterometric ode: trimeter, indented dimeter.)

Outside of the offering of the Sacrifice for Tim, this was perhaps the most beautiful moment of the Liturgy.

After the Funeral there was a luncheon in the Parish social hall. I was late getting there due to being caught in conversations (most pleasant.) I was one of the last to go through the serving line and was left standing with my plate looking for somewhere to sit. I was looking for Msgr. Laliberte, but for some reason I could not see him (is suspect the role of providence) so I was left standing there, probably looking a bit forlorn. A kind lady of the parish who recognized me (more than I recognized her, though she was familiar to me) came up and invited me to sit with her and two others. I took her up on it and sat down.

Tim's old hunting buddy and longtime friend Steve Syrdal began Tim's eulogy (which was well done.) The parishioner introduced me to her table companions as two poets who had traveled from Minneapolis for the Funeral. I took one look at the woman and said: "You're Maryann?" To which she said "yes." I stood up, approached her and said: "I'm Fr. Rob from the Eratosphere..." Of course, it was Maryann Corbett! And her poet traveling companion, Bill Carpenter! We were delighted.

Out of all the tables, I ended up sitting with Maryann and Bill! We were the only three Eratospherians present and we ended up, unintentionally on our part (but, perhaps intentionally on God's) seated together. After the eulogy was over Mayann and I enjoyed conversing of Tim and the old days and about her and Bill's latest projects. I also thanked Maryann for her heavy lifting at the Sphere, in what seems a lifetime ago though it wasn't that long ago) and I apologized for any heart burn I may have caused her, to which she was most gracious. She jokingly mentioned the task of herding a bunch of poets as being no easy thing and we both laughed about that.

I'm so glad that Maryann and Bill came to the Funeral, it was a fitting tribute and act of Love for Tim, a welcome farewell on behalf of the Sphere and a personal blessing for me.

And, as with all things in life, we said farewell to one another and took our leave of Tim, his family and of a time now past and yet still living on in our memories.

Resquescat in Pace Timothy Iver Murphy. Amen.

PS: Mayann or Bill, please feel free to correct anything above, if I have erred in my recollection of Tim's funeral.

Last edited by Robert Pecotte; 07-04-2018 at 03:11 PM.
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Unread 07-04-2018, 03:56 PM
Jan Iwaszkiewicz's Avatar
Jan Iwaszkiewicz Jan Iwaszkiewicz is offline
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia
Posts: 2,604

Thank you for posting this. The tyranny of distance precludes much.

Tim and I spoke but never met he sent me his books electronically. He and I had much in common. Not meeting him is one of my regrets. He was kind and supportive. He made my world a better place.
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Unread 07-07-2018, 07:08 AM
Jennifer Reeser's Avatar
Jennifer Reeser Jennifer Reeser is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 2,240

A fine remembrance of Tim, also with a mention of our own Father Rob Pecotte. This piece has been published in both The Grand Forks Herald and The West Central Tribune:
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Unread 07-10-2018, 08:16 AM
Rob Wright Rob Wright is offline
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Philadelphia PA, U.S.A.
Posts: 791

“We are multitudes.” That’s not quite true here. We are rather small. Attention to craft and a reverence for what has been handed down – what has survived because it is resilient – makes this site unusual if not unique. I find free verse to be much like shaking on the dance floor, fun for the shaker, tedious for those who have to witness the shake. Let’s face it, we are not democratic – well, not very. We have lost one of our number – an important one. We are smaller for it. Tim was prickly, talented and human – all the things I look for in a poet, all the things I admire. We, as a community, are diminished. But we have enriched by knowing Tim and his work, and that makes me joyful as well as sad. I like to imagine him with his maker with whom he had such a interesting relationship, being prickly, difficult, original.
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Unread 08-02-2018, 11:20 AM
Gail White's Avatar
Gail White Gail White is offline
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Breaux Bridge, LA, USA
Posts: 3,318

Does anyone have a copy of Tim's first book, DIKTYNNA? Somewhere over the years I gave mine away, and now I can't find it on-line and it doesn't get mentioned among his complete works. As I recall it contained some his best poems of rural life. I'd hate for it to be forgotten.
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Unread 08-02-2018, 11:50 AM
Ann Drysdale's Avatar
Ann Drysdale Ann Drysdale is offline
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Old South Wales (UK)
Posts: 4,505

Many years and Murphy dogs have passed since then, but I hope she came when he whistled:

Elegy for Diktynna

Go if you must and swim
the dim waters of Acheron
for Actaeon.

When my engraved grouse gun
passes to someone else's son,
I'll whistle "Come."
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Unread 09-17-2018, 02:12 PM
Richard Wakefield Richard Wakefield is offline
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Federal Way, Washington, USA
Posts: 1,664
Default Tim Murphy tribute

Alex has honored me with the task of editing a tribute to Tim. This discussion has already given us a composite portrait of Tim from many angles, and I hope that many of you will offer submissions. The details will be posted soon.

Richard Wakefield
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Unread 09-18-2018, 03:03 PM
Jennifer Reeser's Avatar
Jennifer Reeser Jennifer Reeser is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 2,240

Richard, how thoughtful and generous of you. Many thanks.

Matthew Schmitz, senior editor of First Things, has accepted my review of Tim's Devotions, and has just written with the news that the piece will be published in their next issue.

Would you have a problem with a comment excerpted from that review? Or from the appreciation I wrote, previously published at Catholic Arts Today? I will have to clear it with Mr. Schmitz, but it does not seem unreasonable to me.

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