Timothy Murphy (poet)
Timothy Murphy (born 1951, Hibbing, Minnesota) is an American poet, farmer, and businessman. He has published two collections of poetry that have been widely reviewed. His work has been compared to that of Robert Frost, Emily Dickinson and Richard Wilbur, and Wilbur himself has described Murphy as "a mature and greatly accomplished poet."  Writing of Murphy's second collection, Very Far North, critic Stephen Burt notes, "When Murphy sounds bad, he sounds obviously bad, like bad late Frost—but his good poems are poems Frost, or Jonson, might have admired." 
Murphy studied at Yale University under Robert Penn Warren, graduating (B.A.) as Scholar of the House in Poetry in 1972. However, Warren advised Murphy against an academic career, urging him instead to return to the "rich soil" of his rural roots. Murphy returned to Minnesota, and subsequently became involved in several farming and manufacturing enterprises in North Dakota, experiences which are reflected in his later writing.
Murphy published his first collection of poetry, The Deed Of Gift, in 1998; the collection represents all of Murphy's work as a poet through about 1996. In a contemporary review of the volume, Gerry Cambridge summarized Murphy's accomplishment: "There are outstanding poems here, including ‘Harvest of Sorrows’, ‘Sunset at the Getty’, and ‘The Quarrel’, as well as a great number of very likeable, individual, and tautly-made pieces. It would be hard to confuse Murphy with any other contemporary poet. No one else writing poetry in English sounds quite like him."  As poet Dick Davis has noted, this distinctive style owes much to Murphy's use of traditional meter and rhyme, unusual among poets today: "His poems are wholly his own, and yet the voice in them lives in and through his mastery of traditional metre, which is so thorough as to seem indivisible from the poems’ sensibility and meaning."  This focus on rhyme and meter is exemplified in the following excerpt from "Harvest of Sorrows":
- When swift brown swallows
- return to their burrows
- and diamond willows
- leaf in the hollows,
- when barrows wallow
- and brood sows farrow,
- we sow the black furrows
- behind our green harrows.—excerpt from "Harvest of Sorrows" 
Murphy's second collection, Very Far North, was published in 2002. Murphy has also published Set the Ploughshare Deep: A Prairie Memoir (2000), and a translation of Beowulf (2004) with his partner Alan Sullivan.
The Lewis and Clark Foundation's Dakota Institute Press will be publishing a double volume of Murphy's poems, Mortal Stakes and Faint Thunder, in the spring of 2011. In autumn they will publish Hunter's Log, a collection of Murphy's hunting poems illustrated by Eldridge Hardie.
- Murphy, Timothy; Wilbur, Richard (1998). The Deed of Gift. Ashland, Oregon: Story Line Press. ISBN 1-885266-62-6.
- Murphy, Timothy (2000). Set the Ploughshare Deep: A Prairie Memoir. Athens, Ohio: Ohio University Press. ISBN 978-0-8214-1321-0.
- Murphy, Timothy; Hecht, Anthony (2002). Very Far North. Ewell, Surrey: Waywiser Press. ISBN 1-904130-01-1.
- Sullivan, Alan; Murphy, Timothy (2004). Anderson, Sarah, ed. Beowulf. Longman Press. ISBN 0-321-10720-9.
- "Timothy Murphy, Very Far North". Archived from the original on 2007-02-20. (collected reviews)
- Cambridge, Gerry (Autumn 1999). "Rich Gleanings: The Deed of Gift, by Timothy Murphy". The Dark Horse: 68–71. Archived from the original on 2006-09-30.
- Burt, Stephen (April–May 2003). "New Poets on the Block". Boston Review. Archived from the original on 2007-10-14.
- Murphy, Timothy (Spring 1998). "Reminiscences of Robert Penn Warren". The Dark Horse: 8.
- Haven, Cynthia (November 2001). "Interview:Timothy Murphy". Cortland Review. Archived from the original on 2006-10-24.
- Murphy, Timothy; Wilbur, Richard (1998). "Harvest of Sorrows". The Deed of Gift. Ashland, Oregon: Story Line Press. ISBN 1-885266-62-6.
- Pates, Mikkel (November 2010). "Former ND governor's memoirs". Agweek. Archived from the original on 2010-12-15.
- Links to 20 of Murphy's poems at the poemtree.com website; The Poem Tree is an online anthology of metrical poetry.
- "The Track of the Storm", Murphy's poem that won the 1996 Howard Nemerov Sonnet Award.
- Webcast of Murphy reading at Bookfest 2004, at Library of Congress website; RealPlayer format, 24 minutes.
- February 2010 podcast of Murphy reading recent poems as part of "Distinguished Performance" series on Eratosphere Poetry board; MP3 format, approximately 40 minutes.
- "Tim Murphy in His Own Words" Interview with Rob Godfrey, recorded for localradio.fr, February 2010; MP3 format, approximately 35 minutes.
- "Timothy Murphy". Alsop Review. Archived from the original on 2008-08-17. Biography and links to about a dozen of Murphy's poems.
- Interview, tributes and poems at II.
- Prayer for Sobriety at The Chimaera.
- Poems in various issues of Shit Creek Review
- Poem sequence in The Flea.