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: Ard Churam Choir

Hungry July

Greenway photo by John Kelliher

Hungry July

July is the month before the Harvest comes in. In the days before copious imported produce, farmers and housewives worried about making last year’s stocks last through to harvest time.

Here is what Kevin Danaher’s The Year in Ireland has to say. This account is from 1841

This year, 2024, we’ve had a poor summer after a wet winter and spring. Fodder for cattle and grains and vegetables for us all are a cause of concern.

If we think we’re badly off we need to take a look at our poor forefathers in the years before it all went so disastrously wrong for them in the 1840s.

A Few More from Ard Churam

Some singers and audience on June 27 2024

A Definition

From The Devil’s Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce

auctioneer n. someone who proclaims with his hammer that he has picked a pocket with his tongue

A Fact

In 1568 the Catholic Church condemned the entire population of The Netherlands to death, for heresy.


Glin Castle

Lavender at Listowel Courthouse

Some People I met at the Ard Chúram Performance

A Fishtank

This tank with its very colourful fish is in Ard Chúram Day Centre.

A Poem

This poem by Seamus Redmond will forever be associated with Micheál ÓMuircheartaigh who recited it so beautifully.

A Hurler’s Prayer

With strength of arm and speed of limb 
Unerring eye for the flying ball 
And courage to match whate’er befall
May my stroke be steady and my aim be true
My actions manly and my misses few
No matter what way the game may go
May I rest in friendship with every foe
When the final whistle for me has blown
And I stand at last before God’s judgement throne
May the great referee when he calls my name
Say, you hurled like a man; you played the game.
Seamus Redmond

Glin Castle

Glin Castle was featured in a Discover Ireland post and the proprietors were delighted. Here is what they posted of Facebook.

Thank you to Discover Ireland for featuring us in their article “How to plan a Taylor  Swift-inspired short break in Ireland” 

Article reads:  

” Back in 2018, Swift and Alwyn spent Christmas in Glin Castle, the luxurious country manor on the edge of the Shannon Estuary. The castle is the ancestral home of Catherine FitzGerald, who runs the historic pile with her husband, the actor Dominic West.  

Once again, it was an Instagram post that tipped off followers, who identified the backdrop of Alwyn’s photo as the Knight’s Walk, a 3km loop that weaves through the grounds to the highest point of the Glin Demesne, with great views of the water and the castle itself along the way. And the good news is you don’t need to stay at the castle to do the walk yourself, as it’s open to the public. It’s also worth keeping an eye out for the occasional open days held at Glin Castle, so you can have a look around the impressive 18th century features in the house where they stayed. 

Swift and Alwyn also reportedly stopped for a pint in O’Shaughnessy’s, where she bought a raffle ticket for the local GAA team. This charming country pub was a good choice – it’s just outside the walls of the castle, with antique whiskey jugs on the shelves, a roaring open fire and cosy armchairs.”

A Fact

Human saliva contains a painkiller called opiorphin. It is six times more powerful than morphine.


Carrigaline Pottery

On the banks of The Feale in June 2024

A Listowel connection

Mícheál Ó Muircheartaigh has a fan in Paul Durcan who heard him – mid commentary – send Greetings to our Friends in Brazil one summer Sunday. Here’s Paul’s poem from Poetry Ireland’s Everything to Play For anthology which Mícheál selected & read at our event at Listowel Writer’s Week 2015.

Did you have this tableware?

Carrigaline crockery graced every table I knew in my youth. While I am not a collector, I enjoy being part of a Facebook group given over to the celebration and preservation of this Irish treasure.

Here are a few pieces from that Facebook page.

Ard Churam Choir

On June 27 2024 I was in Ard Chúram day centre to hear a great performance by the Ard Churam Choir. I’d love to post a clip of the singing but I’m running out of space on my hosting platform and videos are very space hungry. Sorry. Take it from me, they were a treat.

Here are some of the lovely people I met there

This man entertained us while we were waiting for the choir to finish their performance in the Fuchsia Centre

Eleanor and Brenda

Aras Mhuire guests

Fact Check

I was a bit dubious about yesterday’s “fact”. It said that babies at birth can only see in black and white.

Jeremy Gould fact checked it for us and here in a nutshell is what he found on Snopes…

What’s True

Babies are born with a visual acuity that is below the threshold for legal blindness …

What’s False

… but it isn’t true that newborns can only see in black and white. Instead, they are able to perceive some colors, in an extremely muted way.

A Definition

from The Devil’s Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce

Architect, n. someone who drafts a plan of your house and plans a draft of your money

A Fact

The toothbrush was invented in China in 1498. The brush was made of boar bristles.

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