Gig Seeker Pro



Band Folk Alternative


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'Means of Illumination' EP, Released Nov 2010



John Maguire was an old man who lived just down the road from where I grew up. Everyone knew him as Maguire. He was the kind of you old man who carved stuff out of wood and ate wild berries that he would pluck from the hedgerows. He knew the name of every wild bird and could talk about the different types of trees and the best places to catch a river trout when fly fishing.

Why is it that in my memory, childhood summers seem so much warmer than they are now? Everyday during those long, lazy summers I would walk with Maguire to the local corner shop. This shop is something of a rarity these days, and how it survived, I’m not quite sure. Like a perfectly preserved capsule of 1940’s society, it stands humbly at the crossroads, ushering anyone who enters into a world of glass milk bottles, sweets in jars and freshly cut cooked ham.

I’m convinced however, that purveying grocery goods was not the sole purpose of this place. It served as a meeting place for the elderly gentlemen of that little rural community. A place where, for them life was simple and sweet once more. A place to put the world to rights and talk about how in the good old days, that would never have been allowed.

And every day as Maguire settled into his conversation he would quietly slip me a coin that was mine to do with whatever I pleased. Usually, as any self respecting eight year-old boy would, I would spend it on sweets and sit in the sun enjoying my purchase.

One day however something changed. Instead of buying one bag of sweets or packet of crisps, I gingerly selected two of the same chocolate bars and took them to the counter. Fred, who ran the shop and knew me well, said ‘Feeling hungry today? Why are you buying two?’ I looked up and proudly declared, ‘These are for me and Maguire!’ Smiling, Fred looked down at me, handed me the chocolate bars and gently said ‘Maguire and I.’