I’ve been ‘watching’ the rugby over this gloomy weekend and at the same time, I have read almost all of a fascinating new book, “Cornwall Herstory” a collection of stories of Cornish women in history, edited by Lesley Trotter, a friend from choir. It is utterly compelling and I am loving it.
The following picture came my way last week for International Women’s Day and seems right for today too.
And this one is always good to share.
Sorry, don’t know the designer here. Do tell me if you do.
John the Fish, photo by Greg Martin : Cornwall Live
Our lovely friend, John Langford, affectionately known as John the Fish, died last month and the celebration of his life was held last Saturday. The hall was absolutely packed with people wanting to show their love for this very special man.
Beautifully decorated coffin Photo by Sue Ellery-Hill
On the display table of memorabilia. Photo Sue Ellery-Hill
Live music Photo by Sue Ellery-Hill
John has been spoken of with love and admiration in all the media from our local papers and news site, Cornwall Live, to Radio 3 where he was mentioned by Petroc Trelawny and his rendering of a Cornish folk song, “Little Eyes” was played. He was best known as a folk singer and that was how we first knew of him when in the 60’s he’d be the resident singer at the Mitchell folk club where my younger brother would go to play. His name came from his earlier days when he was a fisherman in Newlyn. (See the newspaper cuttings below)
John became a Humanist Celebrant as you will have read in the Cornwall Live article. His work was greatly appreciated and when we met him and Carrie recently at a Ralph McTell concert, we were touched that one of his couples came over to make themselves known and to thank him.
My parents knew John and Carrie from the beginnings of the Cornwall Humanists group so when my Mum died in 1993, we turned to the Humanists to conduct a non-religious ceremony for us. Another friend conducted the Ceremony and John sang John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ for us all at Mum’s request.
When we returned to Cornwall in 2008, John asked me to join the Celebrants and was my much-valued mentor as I began to conduct wedding and baby naming ceremonies.
Learning about Baby Namings by watching John at work
At one of the dinners we used to have with John and Carrie and other friends, I made a little thank you gift in the glasswork that I love doing. It was to celebrate John’s time as a fisherman.
The next two photos, which will need enlarging, are of a lovely interview done by Steve Hunt some time ago and tell you much of John’s history.in his own words.
What follows is a brief quotation from the article in the West Briton 2nd February. It’s a lovely summary of this much-loved man.
What a joy! I went back to choir today and, of course it was wonderful to be singing in harmony with The Ingleheart Singers again. Here is Daisies White, a beautiful lullaby, recorded for you this afternoon. We are told that the song came to us ‘as taught by Suzannah Park who learned the song from her mother.’
While we were singing the rain was hammering down and a small dog came in to join us in the Eco Barn. I missed him while he seemed to be listening to Claire but he posed in the doorway just long enough for me.
I long for peace as do so many in this disturbed world.
It’s twenty five years since my lovely Mum died. I love this photo of her with her little brother. She must have been about six or seven and he about two or three. I wish I knew.
Mum with Geoff
A very good friend, folk singer John the Fish, sang ‘Imagine’ at Mum’s Humanist funeral.
Imagine there’s no heaven It’s easy if you try No hell below us Above us only sky Imagine all the people living for today
Imagine there’s no countries It isn’t hard to do Nothing to kill or die for And no religion too Imagine all the people living life in peace
You may say I’m a dreamer But I’m not the only one I hope someday you’ll join us And the world will be as one
Imagine no possessions I wonder if you can No need for greed or hunger A brotherhood of man Imagine all the people sharing all the world
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one.
The following photo was taken in Carn Brea Castle, just nearby, on the occasion of Mum and Dad’s Golden Wedding in 1989. They were married on September 2nd 1939, the day before war was declared and had their honeymoon in Blackpool rather than Paris which had been the chosen destination.
As I approached the Zed Shed for singing withThe Suitcase Singers this morning a truck pulled up with two seals aboard.
Every day I wish for Peace. When we sing we make some peace for each other and when we do concerts, and there are many at this time of year, we give the gift of peace for a while to our audiences. Singing certainly heals my soul. Thank you Claire for this gift.