Being and Somethingness – poem for Robert Peston, by Kevin Higgins

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for Robert Peston


You might liken me

to a urinary tract infection,

in that my job is to prevent

truth trickling out too purely,

but you’re worried such a comparison

might lead to threatening letters

from solicitors acting for the bacilli

who’ve taken up residence

in Mrs Irondrawer’s highly thought of bladder.


Reality is I’m worse,

will not be cured by mere penicillin.

For I am a journalist,

help people forget

things those who operate me

want forgotten.


To keep my thoughts pristine

each night I pay to have my head

dipped in preservatives, claim

it back as miscellaneous.


I’m the carbon monoxide that lulls

those who inhale me to a stupor.

I respect Prince Andrew’s privacy,

ensure certain names never cross

the average arsehole’s mind.


I’m why you know nothing

of the Zinoviev letter

or Emilie Oldknow

and after this must Google them.

I make sure you think

Julian Assange is where he belongs.


Anyone I call a statesman

should immediately be arrested.