This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at

Colm Cooper in Woulfe’s, Memory of My Mother and Jowika in Germany

Wintry Morning in Listowel


Colm Cooper in Listowel

Never meet your heroes, they say. People were not taking that advice in Listowel on November 17 2017 as we waited for Colm Cooper, one of the greatest footballers ever to wear the green and gold, to arrive in Woulfe’s Bookshop.

These little boys waited patiently at the head of the queue for their hero to appear.

Brenda, Kevin, Maura, Mickey and Mary were also waiting patiently as the VIP guest was being given a tour of the racecourse by David Fitzmaurice. Colm hopes to be able to come to Listowel Races next year, an outing he has missed through footballing commitments for many years.

The queue was 3 deep snaking through the shop by the time Colm appeared escorted by Stephen Stack, an old friend and footballing and banking colleague.

Stephen introduced the footballer turned writer. He had to have his list of Colm’s achievements written down for him for it would be difficult for anyone, even Colm himself, to remember them all.

Stephen told us a story that was related to him by Shane Quinn. Shane got the job of marking Colm, then only 18, in a local game. Shane was taken off at half time as it was clear that he couldn’t cope with the rising star of Kerry football. 

“How did you feel about being taken off.” 

According to Stephen’s story, Shane said that his head was in such a reel that he climbed over the wall and went home to bed.

Colm didn’t delay us long with speechmaking.

Colm was here to sign his book and sign he did, patiently and tirelessly and he was more than willing to chat to everyone, to listen to stories, to send greetings to friends and to pose for endless photographs. He is a lovely man.


A Poem for November 

We all have memories of our mothers. In my mind I can hear my mother singing 

“Let him go, let him tarry, let him sink or let him swim

He doesn’t care for me and I don’t care for him.”

or the plaintive Teddy O’Neill

as she went about her daily chores.

Patrick Kavanagh’s poem recalls the simplicity of rural life and the ‘countless, nameless unremembered acts of kindness and of love” that we can all recall about our mothers.

My final choice from The Irish Hospice’s Stories of Love and Hope is

In Memory of my

Patrick Kavanagh

I do not think of
you lying in the wet clay

Of a Monaghan
graveyard; I see

You walking down a
lane among the poplars

On the way to the
station, or happily

Going to second
mass on a summer Sunday

You meet me and you

“Don’t forget to
see about the cattle.”;

Among your
earthiest words the angels stray.

And I think of you
walking along a headland

Of green oats in

So full of repose,
so rich with life-

And I see us
meeting at the end of a town

On a fair day by
accident, after

The bargains are
all made and we walk

Together through
the shops and stalls and markets

Free in the
oriental streets of thought.

O, you are not
lying in the wet clay

For it is harvest
evening now and we

Are piling up the
ricks against the moonlight

And you smile up
at us – eternally.


Jowika in Germany

Philomena Moriarty Kuhn recently posted some photos on Facebook. They were taken on a trip by workers at Jowika Listowel to Germany. I’m sure many of my blog readers will recognise people. If you see your self or someone you know, I’d love to identify people.


Holidays are Coming

Free Parking in Listowel from Friday 1st to 16th Dec from 1pm each day, then Free Parking from Monday 18th until Monday 1st Jan subject to a 2hr parking limit in a parking space.


Christmas Craft Fair, some photos, a poem and a sugar tax in 1901


Christmas 2017 in Listowel, Polar Express Window Displays

1 Comment

  1. Unknown

    I am at present recording the life story of my late husband Michael Buddy Dalton for our grandchildren and have some information on his trip to Germany in 1961 with other trainees for the Jowika factory also some funny stories he told me but I was thrilled to find this site with photos etc. I would love to include more information of his time there as it must have been a daunting and exciting adventure for all. I have been trying to give my 9 and 7 year old g/sons an idea of the huge experience and opportunity it was for all inc.their g/randad. I don't have contacts for any of his co-workers or fellow travellers from that time and would be very grateful if you could let me know where or from whom I could share some memories.
    Thank you,
    Noelle Dalton Tel.061 392323 r 086 0812891.

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