Now available as an audiobook, Many Paths is a story of a successful businessman, Bruce McEver, the founder of Berkshire Capital and a global pioneer of investment banking, who is devastated by the sudden and unexpected death of his wife of thirty years, a beautiful and talented opera singer who shared that life with him and gave it meaning. The day following her death, Christmas morning, in a barn yard on the farm where he and his wife lived together, Bruce experiences a hierophany—a physical manifestation of the holy and sacred. Unbelieving its veracity, the revealing of his vision to his minister sets Bruce off on a journey spanning the world, Harvard Divinity School, Joseph Campbell lectures, summer poetry workshops, professorships, new loves and loves lost, health crises and new business.
Many Paths is heartfelt, honest, unflinching, and charged on every page with humor and grace. It takes an under represented view of traditional autobiography, charting a full and unique life that weaves entrepreneurial, spiritual, intellectual, philanthropic and artistic paths together. In this way, Many Paths follows in the tradition of Augustine’s Confessions, J.R. Moehringer’s The Tender Bar, and Jack Welch’s Jack: Straight from the Gut.
Proceeds will benefit The Foundation for Religious Literary.
McEver’s memoir chronicles an extraordinary life.
The author—an Eagle Scout, U.S. Navy officer, investment banker, entrepreneur, cancer survivor, world traveler, philanthropist, and poet with graduate degrees from both Harvard’s business and divinity schools—details what has been, by any measure, a remarkable personal history. The narrative opens dramatically with the sudden death of the author’s beloved first wife, Georgia, a talented singer, on Christmas Day. McEver’s appetite for achievement, interest in investing, and lifelong love of nature, reading, and travel all took root early. His early career in investment banking provided the experience and connections he needed to launch his own successful firm. Along the way, he began keeping a journal, exploring spirituality, and writing poetry. Stepping back from his day-to-day involvement in the firm after his wife’s death allowed him to further pursue these interests. He also earned a second graduate degree in theology, created a foundation to promote religious literacy, and forged new relationships. More than 40 of the author’s published poems (or excerpts from them) are featured in the text, on themes as diverse as air travel, prayer flags, and pelicans. In both his poetry and his prose, McEver mixes the mundane—stopping for fast food at “a white square building, as welcoming as an ice cube”—with the sublime, such as the spiritual epiphany in the title poem: “and something unnamable / says again, then again: / There are many paths.” He provides excessive detail in some areas (summaries of one banking deal after another will appeal only to Wall Street insiders) while glossing over key moments in important relationships. Still, this candid account of an interesting man leading a multifaceted, eventful life touches on timeless and universal questions and offers many teachable moments.
An eventful autobiography of a financier turned poet.
Friday, September 16, 2022, at 5:30 pm at Scoville Memorial Library, 38 Main St., Salisbury, CT 06068
Monday, July 18, 2022, at 5:30 pm at Explore Bookstore 221 East Main Street, Aspen, CO, 81611
Wednesday, May 4, 2022, at 6:00 pm at Manuel’s Tavern 602 North Highland Avenue Northeast Atlanta, GA 30307
Thursday, April 21, 2022, at 6:00 pm at The Naples Yacht Club, 700 14th Ave. S., Naples, FL 34102
Thursday, May 5, 2022, at 4:00 pm, at Willson Center 1260 S. Lumpkin St., Athens, Georgia. The University of Georgia Press and the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts present, “A Conversation with Bruce McEver.”
…that very Spirit intercedes
with signs too deep for words.
~ Romans 8:24
Christmas morning, below zero,
the day after she died,
my breath freezing, I am dazed
as I walk into the barnyard,
to recall our happiness with the animals there.
Sagging cedar gates close behind me.
My quarter horse, Cinnamon,
spots me over a hundred yards distant
and begins his long lope. Soon,
his soft nuzzle is rubbing my face, warm,
then her horse and soon, the whole herd,
joined by the goats, and the dog.
They ring me in a circle of compassion.
Touched, yet unbelieving, I look up
into a blinding, cold sun and feel a release—
an energy courses
the length of my body,
and says again, then again:
There are many paths.
Nothing has ever been so clear.
Bruce McEver received an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and an M.T.S. (Religion and Literature) from Harvard Divinity School. An investment banker and the Chairman of Berkshire Capital Securities LLC, a firm he founded in 1983, he is a founding supporter of POETRY at TECH in Atlanta and on the board of The Poet’s House in New York. His poems have appeared in Ploughshares, Atlanta Review, and The Cortland Review. He is the author of three books of poetry and a memoir, Many Paths (C&R Press 2022).