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BAFFLE - News and Events

From not being at the races to the Big Smoke!

It’s Friday 30th July. It’s 9pm and only four people were in the big function room. We felt a bit left out as there was the ‘aftermath’ of a wedding happening next door. We were in Cheevers of Craughwell and wondering if we were in the right venue or did we get the date mixed up. But organisers Anne Marie Kennedy and Stephen Shields assured us all that everything was going to plan and, sure enough, within half an hour the place was packed. Twenty five runners were on the race card, all chomping at the bit and rearing to go. Brian O’Rourke the internationally renowned scholar and author, entertained the audience throughout the evening with his own songs.

But then the off came, with the runners taking about an hour and a half to complete the circuit. It was a very close finish with Noelle Lynskey just holding off James Kennedy and Kathleen Healy in a photo finish. (Click here to read Noelle’s poem)

Also ran: Ray Gately, Lucy McCrann, Leinn ni Cleirigh, Ian McDonald, Margaret Hickey, Mike Coye, Colga Coy, Tom Glendon, Johnny Kelly, Vicky McNally, Pat Lawless, Micael Kearney, Eamonn McNally, Siun McDonald, Joe Kennedy, Elaine Schmilar, Joe Kelly, Brian Nolan, Brenda Flaherty, Joe Conmy, Mary Rourke, Tommy Madden.

We also had RTE broadcaster Sean O'Rourke present, who no doubt was there to check on form.

The evening was arranged to honour the memory of Seamus Matthews who sadly passed away in 2003 but, as a Baffler, still lives on in his poetry. Anne Marie Kennedy read an extract from one of his poems and Eamonn McNally presented Seamus’s widow Rena with a copy of this and two of his other poems from the BAFFLE collection. Also present were his daughter and two sons.



It’s Saturday 14th August. It’s 8am and there are only four people waiting for the bus outside Supermacs. But we were three minutes early so all the rest arrived on time except for the two who would catch a later bus. Some people just need that extra two hours in the sack!

We were on our way to Dublin to meet up with Dublin based Bafflers Vinnie Caprani and Tom Glendon. This was the long awaited literary tour of Dublin. We centred ourselves in The Gresham Hotel and all eighteen of us headed off at 12.45 to the nearby Pro Cathedral. This was a special experience as we were afforded a tour of the cathedral crypt, arranged by Tom Glendon. We viewed the lead-lined coffins of past The Arch Bishops who are laying at rest there. As this is not generally open to the public we were indeed privileged. Vinnie took the group from there to O’Connell Street giving us the background to and the stories about it’s many statues and a fascinating history of the Gresham Hotel. We spent an hour or so in the Hugh Lane Gallery and The Writers Museum before taking a trip down Moore Street, ending up in The Confessional Box pub where we eased our feet, wetted our whistle and listened to more stories and songs from the locals.

Later we dined, wined and recited poetry in Toddy’s Bar ‘till the early hours.

A great trip and many thanks to Tom and Vinnie for putting so much effort into organising the itinerary.

Those on the trip were: Eamonn, Finuala, Ian, Siun, Joe, Johnny, Tom, Meta, Vinnie, Anne Marie, Vicky, Ray, Mary Ida, Maura, Pearlie, Geraldine and Barbara. (Pearlie’s son Tom and granddaughter Molly were also on part of the tour)

Check out the photos for both events


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