Time hardly mattered in the village of Mucker, the birthplace of poet and writer Patrick Kavanagh. Full of wry humour, Kavanagh's unsentimental and evocative account of his Irish rural upbringing describes a patriarchal society surviving on the edge of poverty, sustained by the land and an insatiable love of gossip. There are tales of schoolboy skirmishes, blackberrying and night-time salmon-poaching; of country-weddings and fairs, of political banditry and religious pilgrimages; and of farm-work in the fields and kicking mares. Kavanagh's experiences inspired him to write poetry which immortalized a fast-disappearing way of life and brought him recognition as one of Ireland's great poets.
One of the major figures in the modern Irish poetic canon, Patrick Kavanagh (1904-67) was a post-colonial poet who released Anglo-Irish verse from its prolonged obsession with history, ethnicity and national politics. His poetry, written in an uninhibited vernacular style, focused on the 'common and banal' aspects of contemporary life.