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

Tag: Anthony Nash

A marathon dance in 1889

St. John’s Listowel in October 2022


GAA is Family

Anthony Nash, former Cork goalkeeper has retired from club hurling. His emotional decision was covered in the sport website The42.

I met Anthony Nash in Strand Street, Kanturk in 2014 when Kanturk hurling was in its heyday and Nash’s career with Cork was flourishing.

Eight years later, he has made the hard decision to leave the pitch.

Here is the 42 article.

ANTHONY NASH HAS decided to call time on his club hurling career after South Liberties were beaten in the Limerick SHC semi-final 1-23 to 0-9 by Na Piarsaigh. 

The two-time All-Star transferred to South Liberties in 2021. The club secured their spot in Limerick’s final four after a stunning 1-13 to 0-14 win over Patrickswell before suffering defeat in Kilmallock last Saturday. 

“It was sore in a way, you are living in fairytale land going into a game but I thought the lads were exceptional,” Nash said, speaking on The42‘s GAA Weekly podcast.“After 35 minutes we were three points down, just the difference in class pulled through. There is no point saying otherwise, a far better team beat us.” 

Nash spent 16 years representing Cork at senior level. After his inter-county retirement, he transferred to the South Liberties club due to strong family links.

His parents hail from the parish and his uncles, former South Liberties players Declan and Mike Nash, won two Munster medals with Limerick and played in two All-Ireland finals during the 1990s. His cousin is player of the year nominee Barry Nash. 

“I’m done. I kind of made a decision last year that I wasn’t going to play on. Christmas time came, I was saying what will I do and I felt ok. I still feel ok, thank God.

“I referenced this in the dressing room after, I came out of a county career and a club career with a few injuries, but nothing major. Disks in my back and neck but I’m able to walk and talk, play golf. I consider that a successful career. 

“As I said to the lads in the Kanturk WhatsApp, I am hanging up that beautifully designed Aidan Walsh hurley once and for all. Leading into it I was saying, ‘can’t wait to be finished. Hoping it would be a county final. How tough it all was, sick of it etc.’

“Then I took off my boots for the final time and got emotional. That is it. Memories of a child, family driving you everywhere and anywhere. 

“I’d thank everyone who helped me get what I did. I’ll never forget the help. I think a lot of umpires will be delighted, I won’t be nagging about wide balls! I am very honoured to have represented Cork, captained Cork, played for the club where I was born and finished my career with my family.” 

Nash said getting to finish in the famed green and gold was the perfect ending to his playing career.

“At the time of the transfer, 90 per cent was positive including Kanturk. there is always ten per cent negativity. ‘A disgrace for transferring, all that stuff.’ People just don’t understand my story. I’d never apologise.

“My grandfather was there after the game the last day, he was crying. My uncle was crying.

“It was an emotional day for me to be able to hang up my boots with the Liberties jersey on. I got to go to Croke Park and win a club All-Ireland with Kanturk. Everyone says, ‘one club, one county.’

“It was a dream to be able to finish my career with my cousin on the field, my uncle as a selector on the sideline. All my family standing around, hugging and embracing. I wouldn’t swap it for the world. 

“In fairness, all my Kanturk friends wished me the best. I turned 38 last week and I was getting congratulations and happy birthdays from Kanturk. I’d hope to get involved in that club in a few years’ time.

“For me, I know a fairytale ending seems like a county final but it was a fairytale ending that I get to wear the green and gold of South Liberties after growing up with them during the summers.

“Hard to take, Sunday was a tough day but look, I will be fine. I am very grateful to hurling as a sport. Very grateful to the GAA.”

To listen to the full episode, go to


Collopy ‘s Bar and Hotel

Remember Collopy’s Corner?

It was a lively place in 1889 according to this newspaper clip that Dave O’Sullivan found in the Kerry Evening Post.

I wonder do any of the local Kissane’s know anything of this legendary ancestor?


Danny’s Halloween Window


Some photos from Ladies Day 2013

Some people at Ladies Day




I’ll be cheering for Anthony Nash and all the Cork team on Sunday.

Look who’s into the hurling now!


This extraordinary photo was taken at Glenachoor Stream by Mike Flahive of Bromore Cliffs.

Some vaguely sports related stories from summer 2013 and Seamus Heaney

This is yours truly in Kanturk with Anthony Nash, the Cork hurling goalkeeper. I encountered this lovely young man on a trip to my hometown this summer. Here’s hoping my real home has a bit better luck than my adopted one in Croke Park next week.


Trevor Brennan was in John. B’s on the occasion of the twinning of his pub in Toulouse with John B.’s in Listowel. He had a chat on the night with Brendan Guiney, Listowel and former Kerry footballer.


This is Anne Egan seeing the Finuge Freewheelers off on The Ring of Kerry Cycle, August 10 2013.


This photo of The Kerry Crusaders was taken in Killarney and I got it from their Facebook page. They do enormous good work, keeping fit and raising money for local charities.


 Local sportsman, Eugene Moriarty got married during summer 2013.


R.I.P.  Seamus Heaney

Warning:The following is a self indulgent piece for my former pupils. If you were not taught English by me you might want to opt out now.

I met a former pupil on the street and she reminded me that I was the teacher who introduced her to the poetry of Seamus Heaney. He is now her all time favourite poet. 

It has been my great privilege to introduce hundreds of girls to the early work of Heaney. These poems found a resonance with adolescent girls who so recently had grappled with similar uncertainties to the young poet.

In Mid Term Break: a poem often named as “my favourite Heaney poem”, the young poet comes back after a 6 week absence to a home he hardly recognizes. Nothing is as it should be, baby is laughing, mother is crying, father is totally broken  and adult neighbours stand to greet the young. His younger brother’s body is laid out in “the room”. The young Heaney’s shock, bewilderment and incomprehension are  so well conveyed that we are all there with him.

The Early Purges always led to much discussion on animal welfare issues.

“I was six when I first saw kittens drown…”

I grew up on a farm as did many of my pupils. They knew about vermin and other pests but nowadays cats are “companion animals” and Jim Taggart’s prodding them to drown in a bucket of water slung on the snout of the yard pump is a shocking image to today’s softies. The poet’s horror and grudging acceptance of the necessity for pest control on “well run farms” was much debated in Listowel classrooms.

Who has gone Blackberry Picking and known the triumph of hope over experience?

“Every year we hoped they’d last, knew they would not.”

Pres. girls I taught always loved the poems where Heaney examined his relationship with his father. In Follower we see him as a child  stumbling around in his father’s wake as he expertly ploughs with a team of horses.

“I was a nuisance, tripping, falling, yapping always….”

Then we feel the pangs of his guilt when the roles are reversed and his father is the dependent one,

“It is he who keeps stumbling behind me and will not go away.”

Seamus Heaney came from a large family. In Clearances he tells us how he treasured precious moments snatched on his own with his beloved mother.

“When all the others were away at mass

I was all hers as we peeled potatoes


Never closer the whole rest of our lives.

Family pride and respect for family traditions is a theme explored in Digging. In school, above all other places, we are all conscious of the pressure to live up to standards set for us by our families. Parental expectations weigh heavily on some teenagers. 

Seamus Heaney was the eldest of nine, a place in the family carrying huge pressures. The first born son usually inherits the farm and carries on the farming tradition of his fathers.

“By God the old man could handle a spade

Just like his old man.

My grandfather cut more turf in a day 

Than any other man on Toner’s bog.


But I have no spade to follow men like that

Between my finger an my thumb

 The squat pen rests

I’ll dig with it.”

Seamus Heaney broke many moulds. He has left us a massive legacy.  May he rest in peace.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén