|St. Charles Poet John McGuire has published a book of his poetry,
some of which was inspired by his children Kelly and Ryan.
By Kari Allen
|John McGuire never wants to be accused of being lazy. Ever.
As an advertising executive, local poet and divorced father of three, it's difficult to imagine that ever happening.
In fact, the St. Charles resident was recently recognized for his talents by being included in three different directories - Who's Who in the Midwest, Who's Who in the East and Who's Who in the World (the last of which recognizes only one person in 155,000).
"I feel very complimented that my work was found significant enough to be included (in the three directories)," he said. "After all, it was my hobby (poetry) that was recognized."
McGuire, who recently published his own collection of poetry titled One Man's Life: A Poetic Review, refers to poetry as a "hobby" because of his primary work with one of the largest and most prominent publications in the world.
"My job (as an advertising executive) is first," he explained. "This (poetry) is all fun and folly and creative endeavors...It's something I want to leave behind for future societies."
McGuire believes in the importance of leaving behind messages for prospective generations because history, as he sees it, repeats itself. And some of the issues we face today are not very pleasant to deal with.
Among the issues McGuire addresses in his poetry are divorce, relationships, love, parent's separation from children, abortion and even his Harley.
"I don't write about dreamy-schemy stuff," he said. "But reality-based struggles...I like to write about people and relationships and real-life stuff. I'm told that my kind of poetry causes people to think and say immediately, 'I can relate to that.'"
|Readers may strongly connect with McGuire's poems because
they are actual glimpses into his life. Almost every topic he explores is
something McGuire has had first-hand experience with.
For example, in his poem A Matter of Convenience, McGuire expresses the fear and pain he feels for his children, Ryan and Kelly, who live in Colorado with their mother. McGuire is very aware of the pain, frustration and confusion children go through during and after divorce.
Ryan and Kelly, ages 7 and 9, spend some time with McGuire during the holidays. And although it's been several years since the divorce, McGuire still senses the pain his children experience.
While working on a train set together, Ryan suddenly turned to his father and asked, "Dad, why couldn't you and Mom have worked it out? Why couldn't you have just stayed with her?"
"It just kills me," admitted McGuire, tears filling his eyes.
Although questions such as the ones Ryan asked are extremely difficult for McGuire, he is positive that both he and his ex-wife handle their situation in a healthy manner by communicating very honestly and openly with their children.
Their mother and I are very committed to their health, happiness and education," he said. "We did not want them to be ruined by the anger of divorce."
This confidence in the face of an eminently painful subject is characteristic of McGuire, who describes himself as "a realist and an optimist." He sees many problems in today's society, but he also believes positive changes are possible.
McGuire believes the way to focus and find solutions to today's problems lie in one's faith and belief in an afterlife.
If you believe in a hereafter of some sort..., you will know the trail we walk on (Earth) is not to be trashed," said McGuire. "As long as you have faith, you can carry through."
John McGuire's One Man's Life: A Poetic Review can be found at many bookstores. However, McGuire, being a local author, encourages interested readers to call him directly at (630) 377-6501 to inquire about a personally signed copy of his book, posters, audiocassettes of his poems or past news articles. McGuire will respond to those who leave their name and phone number.
This article first appeared in Section B of the Tuesday, January 7, 1997 edition of The Courier-News, Fox Valley's Local Newspaper Since 1874, and is used with permission.
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