Created By: ULSARA
Patrick Kavanagh (1904-1967) was born and raised in Co Monaghan and moved to Dublin in 1939. He lived in a number of homes in the area and was known to spend his time walking along the Grand Canal contemplating life. Two of his poems were inspired by his walks along the canal, Canal Bank Walk and Lines written on a Seat on the Grand Canal. It was the later poem of Kavanagh's love of the area which provided the inspiration for a commemoration of the poet in the form of a statue of Kavanagh sitting on a bench situated on his favourite spot beside his beloved Grand Canal and has become a recognisable landmark in the area.
On Raglan Road is where Patrick met Hilda, probably while she was en route to UCD where she studied medicine. It’s not clear if Kavanagh moved into Mrs. Kenny’s ten shilling–a-week high-class lodging at no.19 Raglan Road after this or had been living there at the time. However, it’s rumoured he stayed in the top floor room with the low window that overlooks the junction at Elgin road.
His love for Hilda Moriarty was not returned and she went on to marry Donagh O’Malley, who went on to become the Minister of Education. Kavanagh married Katherine Barry Moloney in April, 1967 and lived with her in Waterloo Road, Dublin. He died on November, 30th the same year in Dublin. Moriarty laid a wreath of red roses in the shape of an H at his graveside.
Kavanagh is best remembered for his poetry, most notably “The Great Hunger” and “On Raglan Road”. The latter was published in 1946 and famously released as a song twenty years later following a chance encounter between Kavanagh and Luke Kelly (himself a former resident of Dartmouth Square) in 1966. The Monaghan born poet, who lived in this area from 1939 until his death, is commemorated with no less than three plaques (62 Pembroke Road, 1943-1958, 19 Raglan Road, 1958-1959, and Baggot Street Bridge, on the site of Parson’s Bookshop) and three canal bank benches (two stone and wood benches, one of which also has a dedication to Percy French, either side of the lock, at Baggot Street Bridge, and a wonderful bronze sculpture and bronze canal bench, on the west side).
Some text taken from http://www.newsfour.ie/2016/10/raglan-road-the-enchanted-way/
This point of interest is part of the tour: Upper Leeson Street Area Dublin Walking Tour