Poetry: Kevin Higgins | Cassandra Voices

Poetry: Kevin Higgins

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Presidential

When you finish reading this poem,
you’ll remember only
the Black Forest Gateaux
I bought you once.

I had no option but to vote for
that tax on women’s shoes
but greatly admired the fight you put up against it;
have kept all the press cuttings,
especially those that took care not to mention me.

As you, me, and the mirror know
I’ve always been a great
pro-choice advocate;
that’s why I spent thirty years
never mentioning the issue.

When I stop talking
all you’ll remember is
the Black Forest Gateaux
I bought you once.

When I signed this bill to keep
what we did to the children secret,
you, me, and my bodyguards know
how vehemently I’m against it.

Trick is: what to remember
and what not,
because of a Black Forest Gateaux
I ordered you once.

The history books are littered with
shit I voted for but was against
in the restaurant afterwards,
as I eyed the Black Forest Gateaux
and thought of you.

And as I explain at length in my book
‘The Art of Statecraft’,
when the Fourth World War descends
and the division bell rings,
I’ll have no alternative but to leap up –
with nothing in my heart but peace –
and, at best, abstain.

As you’re vapourised
you’ll remember nothing
but the Black Forest Gateaux
I fed you once.

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About Author

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Kevin Higgins’s poems have been broadcast on BBC Radio 4, RTE Radio One, and Lyric FM; and quoted in The Daily Telegraph, The Times (UK), Hot Press, The Daily Mirror and on Tonight with Vincent Browne. He had published six collections of poetry with Salmon Poetry, the most recent being ‘Sex and Death at Merlin Park Hospital’ (2019). His books can be purchased at www.salmonpoetry.com.

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