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Now Available: Father’s Shoes

If you enjoy the ballads of Robert Service, then you will enjoy the poetry of Paul McFarland. If Sam McGee and Dangerous Dan McGrew are characters that brought the frozen north country to life for you, then McFarland’s characters—fictitious and real—will bring the woodlands of Maine into your living room or den. Pete Oatway, who lives on the shores of Chesuncook Lake and is a very good friend of the poet, was surprised and delighted when his poem was hand delivered to him up at “The Village.” “Tiny” Holtham was a real person whose feats of strength were well known in the midcoast Maine area. Carlton Mendell, a very popular long distance runner and frequent racing companion with McFarland, ran races into his eighties. These are just a few of the characters who make appearances in this book.

The deer hunter and brook trout fisherman will be entertained with the exploits of the poet, his grandfather, and other fictional characters who roamed the backwoods of Maine. The poet’s forty years in the commercial fishing industry have provided him with experiences that have resulted in poems about adventure and tragedy in the Bering Sea and the North Atlantic. You will read of the loss of fifteen lives of the crew of the Arctic Rose in the Bering Sea and the ill-fated trip of the Andrea Gail that was portrayed in the movie The Perfect Storm is put into verse in these pages.

Humor, patriotism, nostalgia, and spiritualism can also be found in abundance inside these covers. McFarland, a Maine native, can bring a smile to your lips with many of his poems, but it is almost certain that some will bring a tear to your eye. This book will be one that you will keep within easy reach. The wish of the poet is that fathers and grandfathers will spend many enjoyable hours reading these verses to their sons and grandsons as his father read to him.


Paul McFarland is a true storyteller, skillfully weaving words, rhythm, and rhyme to unspool the lives of his authentic Maine characters. These are poems to read aloud to one another on a winter’s night or around a campfire, to share with children and grandchildren in hopes of passing along a love of the spoken word and the classic story.

—Kristen Lindquist

Paul McFarland, a Maine native, taught algebra and geometry for ten years before entering the world of commercial fishing. He was employed for over forty years by a company that operates five factory trawlers in Alaska. Recently retired at the age of seventy-five, he resides in Lincolnville, Maine, with his wife of over fifty years, Sheila.