Skip to main content


On A Prodigious Philanthropist’s Ghastly Second Death  
after Bernie Taupin

Goodbye your shiny tracksuits,
though I never saw one unzipped.
They had the grace to hide your bits;
while those around you fawned;
made you Knight Bachelor -
for charitable services. Then had
your granite headstone
goodness gracious dismantled
and sent to landfill
near Skipton.

And it seems to me you lived
your life as it happens
giving love to children,
you picked up in various hospitals,
in the back of your silver Rolls Royce.
Never knowing when Mary Whitehouse
might give you an award
for services to family friendly TV,
and you’d be forced
to wind the window down
to accept it. And I would
have liked to know you
but I was just a kid.
Your cigar burnt out long before
I ever got to smoke it.

Their jealousy towards you odious.
Not everyone can be a crony of
both Margaret Thatcher and
Cardinal Basil Hume.
The University of Leeds gave you
how’s about that, then an honorary
doctorate of law. And pain
was the price they paid.
Even when you died, pundits
whispered behind fists,
when the microphone was safely off,
that Jimmy was found now then, now then
with his mitts up a girl’s dress.

Goodbye England’s shiny tracksuit,
though I never got to look inside you,
from the boy watching
Top of The Pops, Christmas 1976,
who sees you as something more than sexual
more than just our Sir James Wilson Vincent Savile,
Order of the British Empire.

And it seems to me you lived
your life as it happens fixing children,
you got from various hospitals,
in the back of your silver Rolls.
Never knowing when Tony
Blair might invite you to dine at Chequers.
I would have liked to know
you but guys and gals I was just a kid.
And pain was the price they paid.


Kevin Higgins facilitates poetry workshops at Galway Arts Centre and teaches creative writing at Galway Technical Institute. He is also Writer-in-Residence at Merlin Park Hospital and the poetry critic of the Galway Advertiser. His first collection of poems The Boy With No Face was published by Salmon in February 2005 and was short-listed for the 2006 Strong Award. His second collection, Time Gentlemen, Please, was published in March 2008 by Salmon.  The Ghost In The Lobby is Kevin’s fourth collection of poetry will be launched early Spring 2014.




Popular posts from this blog

Review of the new Simple Minds album - Walk Between Worlds

Taste is a matter of opinion - or so goes one opinion. Aesthetics, a branch of pistols at dawn, is unlikely to become unruffled and resolved any time soon, and meantime it is possible to argue, in this post-post-modern age, an age of voter rage, that political opinion trumps taste anyway. We like what we say is art. And what we say is art is what likes us.

Simple Minds - the Scottish band founded around 1977 with the pale faces and beautiful cheekbones, and perfect indie hair cuts - comes from a time before that - from a Glasgow of poverty and working-class socialism, and religiosity, in a pre-Internet time when the heights of modernity were signalled by Kraftwerk, large synthesisers, and dancing like Bowie at 3 am in a Berlin club.

To say that early Simple Minds was mannered is like accusing Joyce of being experimental. Doh. The band sought to merge the icy innovations of German music with British and American pioneers of glam and proto-punk, like Iggy Pop; their heroes were contrived,…


Wheeler Light for 'Life Jacket'.

The runner-up is: Daniel Duffy - 'President Returns To New York For Brief First Visit'

Wheeler Light currently lives in Boulder, Colorado.

Life Jacket

summer camp shirtsI couldn’t fit in then
are half my size nowI wanted to wear
smaller and smallerarticles of clothing
I shrunk to the sizethat disappeared

of an afterthoughtin a sinking ship body
too buoyant to sinktoo waterlogged for land
I becamea dot of sand


Dr Bruce Meyer, a significant Canadian poet and writer, will be the final judge for this year's Beverly Prize For International Writing - the impressive super shortlist of 18 international poets and writers is announced below.
Any original unpublished manuscript, in English, by anyone living anywhere in the world, writing in any genre or on any topic, prose, non-fiction or poetry (even drama) is eligible, making it arguably the world's most eclectic "broad church" literary scouting prize. Last year's debut winner was Sohini Basak (her book is being launched in Bloomsbury July 5th, 2018).

The rules of the prize stipulate that any author chosen for the shortlist agrees to accept publication with Eyewear if judged to be the final winner; and may not be entered into other competitions at this final stage of adjudication.
Bruce Meyer is author of more than 60 books of poetry, short fiction, non-fiction, literary journalism, and portraiture. He was winner of the Gwendolyn…