Advisory Epistle From Literature Quangocrat, by Kevin Higgins

(Picture taken at meeting of Central Heating Committee of LITERATURE EIRE)

(after Alexander Pope)


About my person, I at all times carry

a bowl of re-heated cocktail sausages

and a completed application form asking

that I be better funded next year. I only read novels

which interrogate the relationship

between gout and Islamist terrorism,

translated from the obligatory French;

and poets whose words make me sink

more comfortably into

my brown swivel chair.


It’s taken five hundred thousand Euro

strategically invested by a range

of government agencies

over the past three years to give

the literature loving public

me sitting here in this office, knowing

the name of the twelfth most

popular poet in Mongolia;

a country I had to visit

three times last year,

at your expense, to ascertain

the correct pronunciation

of said verse-maker’s name.


My most ardent followers,

a hairy-palmed crew

of professional online bum smoochers

who append themselves to me

on the off-chance, like maggots

around an untreated wound,

each with an avant-garde masterpiece safely

locked way inside his or her head.


My own favourite writers? By far

those who are on nobody’s

side but their own.


KEVIN HIGGINS is The Bogmans Cannon Satirist-In-Residence