Ode To Minister for State Security Frances Fitzgerald
for Maurice McCabe & John Wilson
You like being photographed
with men in uniform
who all work for you. The law
is what you think appropriate
any particular day.
You’re the Traffic Cops.
You’re the latest report from Army Intelligence.
You’re everything the Special Branch
choose to tell you about
your enemies. In your brief case: things
about them even God’s forgotten.
You see their smiley faces
but hear tell of their
via a joke told you
on the fringes of a classified
national security briefing.
You’re the glorious portrait
of yourself that, for now, hangs
above the Garda Commissioner’s
thick brown desk.
You don’t suffer fools except
the journalist who, in mitigation – it must be said –
was too hammered last night to make bad
the promises he threw the Polish barmaid’s way,
as she assisted to the exit
his absolute confidence
in what you’re trying to do
with the new broom
you inherited from the previous guy
Things remain whatever you prefer to call them,
given every legally held
Uzi submachine gun
in the state is technically
answerable to you.
KEVIN HIGGINS is The Bogmans Cannon satirist-in-residence