Poem: The Candidate Explains
Kevin Higgins

after Charlotte Nichols MP

I didn’t know the meaning
of “incursion” or “dealt with”
the negative connotation until this morning.
Didn’t realise the possible definitions
of “parasite”, “rubbish dump”, “bad human material”.
Didn’t know until this morning the connotations
of “dismantle”, “pikey”, “assimilate”.
The negative meanings of “scum”,
“child thief”, “branding iron”.
Didn’t know “dirty”, “asocial”, “expel”.
The connotations of “a people involved
in the manufacture of human freaks.”
Didn’t know the meaning until now
of “Rahoonery”, “pollutant”, “Pharajimos”.
The problematic side of those over the age of five
being taken away and civilised.
Didn’t know the meaning of “The Devouring”,
“The Cutting Up”, or “behind concrete walls”.
The negative connotation of “whoever kills one,
shall be guilty of nothing.”
Didn’t know the meaning of “deport”
until I saw it done this morning,
clean as a Police Superintendent’s signature
or a Councillor’s campaign for re-election.

Kevin Higgins

Kevin Higgins


Kevin Higgins is co-organiser of Over The Edge literary events in Galway. He teaches poetry workshops and is a poetry critic with The Galway Advertiser. Kevin has published five full collections of poetry, most recently, Sex and Death at Merlin Park Hospital (2019). The Stinging Fly magazine described Kevin as "likely the most read living poet in Ireland". Kevin’s sixth full poetry collection, Ecstatic, will be published by Salmon this summer.

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