Frank Maguire
A paradigm poetical
By Frank Maguire
February 2, 2011

Is my poem autobiographical? For the most part! But as an allegory — a symbolic narrative — the intent is to impress a moral lesson by imagery and metaphor that can be hyperbolic...overstated/exaggerated, or understated, if needs be, representing something as less than it is.

So, though autobiographical in that there are varying degrees of similarity in all human experiences, "The BOSTON BOY" is better taken paradigmatically (paradelknynai [Gk.] — "side by side") representative of the similes in human nature and human experience.

To the extent that my poem depicts my life, I offer it openly, as a disciple of our Lord, that anyone who reads it and glimpses herself or himself will encounter our merciful God and will, in faith, place all trust and hope in Him. For He is True.

Allow me to pray as our Lord told us to pray: "Dearest Father, hear our cry for Your mercy for our nation. There is a remnant who has not rejected You. Without Your forgiveness and mercy, Lord, for the blood of the innocent cries out from the very soil to You, there is no hope. We bless You, dear Father, and ask that for the sake of Your remnant that You bless America; make Your power and mercy known for Your glory, and save our nation, even though we are undeserving and when there appears to be little hope, lest we dare boast and claim a human victory. And Lord, we pray also for Your people in Zion, Your home."

The BOSTON BOY: And Where We End Up
By Frank Maguire

I was born south of Boston in a three-decker flat.
My mother was Mary, my father...was that.
A slave to his work and a stranger to love, he spent his entire life dyin'.

It was oatmeal at seven, then the subway to school.
Mom had supper at six, 'twas a regular rule.
She worked herself sick, buyin' passage to heaven, and spent her entire life tryin'.

I sometimes played baseball, and I sometimes played god;
The way of the season was the way that I trod.
I bought for my cronies, and I bought what they sold. And I spent my entire youth buyin'.

Then I met a sweet girl who was schooled by the nuns,
And the schoolin' resulted in daughters and sons.
She loved me so well, and I loved hell. And she spent all her lonely nights cryin'.

My children all grew as I absently led.
They did what I did, and ignored what I said.
By some magic they learned what confusion had taught. That the truth I was teachin' was lyin'!

Then one day my wife, in tearless control,
Said, "You've broken my heart, and tainted my soul.
You've spoken just words, and more words, and more words, but your acts are the acts of denyin'

She told me she loved me...that she always would,
That she'd harbour no hate, that she'd cherish the good;
She'd promised to love me 'til death do us part,
And that promise was kept in the heart of her heart,
But because of her love, she could no longer help me to spend my entire life dyin'

Now, my life it began on that very same day,
And a night doesn't pass I thank God when I pray
For a lifetime of lovers more loving than I,
But especially the love of my lady,
"Thank you my Lord for my lady."

And Where We End Up

As children of Adam we come to an end,
But Jesus came into this world to amend
The harvest of sowing a life full of sin;
By God's grace, our bad sowing can still reap a win.

As a hound Who does not lose our track, God pursues,
But of fleeing or capture, 'tis we who must choose
To be slave to sin's freedom, or in bond to the Cup,
Victory's not whence we started, but where we end up.

My children and children's, dear souls whom I love,
When my spirit resigns and migrates with the Dove,
'Twill not be an "if" on my heart, dears, but "when,"
For the ending will find us together again.

© Frank Maguire


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

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Frank Maguire

(Frank Maguire passed away on May 19, 2021. His obituary can be read here.

Frank Maguire was born in Dorchester, MA, 1938, attended schools in Massachusetts, California, and Arizona, where he completed degrees in music and English writing/Journalism. Frank has been married to Helen Isabel Maguire Estevez of Culver City, California, since 1957. They have six children, 14 grandchildren, and 17 great-grandchildren.


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