Emptiness – a poem by Anne B. Murray


there is an emptiness which knows
the attraction of the clean sheet to the penitent
not the threat of the blank page to the poet
which sees the potential of the fallow field
not the blight of the vacant lot
which trusts in the dream, not the fantasy

a good kind of emptiness which doesn’t
lust or ache with desire or regret
but waits in readiness content to do nothing
except prepare itself by fasting
which hollows itself out to enable
the echo of hope to be heard

this sweet emptiness
hears the contemplative silence of the pilgrim
not the dull drumming of boredom or greed
it is an innocent in the desert
with nothing to lean on
but its own fragility


Anne B. Murray worked for many years in Glasgow, Scotland, facilitating adult creative writing groups  Now retired, she writes and performs poetry and organises public readings. She has had many poems published in several journals and anthologies in the UK and has self-published four poetry pamphlets. Her latest pamphlet The Colour Shop is due out in 2019.




  1. John Backman says:

    This is lovely. I’ve been pondering the Buddhist idea of emptiness for a while, and this speaks precisely to what I’ve learned. How delightful to see it expressed in poetic language.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Anne B. Murray says:

    Many thanks for your kind comments. I’m glad you enjoyed reading the poem


  3. kc kiley says:

    dear ms. murray, i love your poems. i mostly know of them from reading “evidence of things not seen”. i am moved by them the way i am by the writings of joni mitchell. i live in california. i am a climber. i am wondering if there is anyway that i can write to you – i would be honored. i am kc kiley. my email address is: kileyriver@yahoo.com. i hope to hear from you. may this note find you happy + well. all my very best to you, kc


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