Laddering Tights (after Kate Bush) by Kevin Higgins

You take it out and show me,

and we roll violently around on the green

Sunday evenings when the rest of the Village

are home planning to kill their wives.

You have a temper, like my lactose intolerance,

my peanut allergy combined.
Bad tummy in the night

I thought I was going to lose

the bean chilli with chocolate and walnuts

you made me, leave my laddering, laddering,

laddering tights

behind on the bathroom floor.
You are Cliff Richard, only crueller.

Totally bald now and the top of my head’s

so cold! Let me climb back in your letter box and show you

the things I learned at art school.
It gets dark out here and the street is full of loonies,

all of whom remind me of you.

Without you I whine a lot,

whine a lot, find

the ceiling comes clattering down

covers me in fine white dust,

even when I’m outside,

wailing in your scullery air vent.
You are crueller even

than Sir Edward Heath

to leave me out here singing like this.

Yours the only face I want to see

when I tear off your gimp mask

and show the moves

I learned at the interpretive dance class

you made me take.
I’ve come home.

And it’s fucking cold out here.

Let me in your bathroom window.
Let me grab it, almost

yank it right off and put it

in a toasted rye bread sandwich.
You made me leave my laddering, laddering,

laddering tights

behind on the cruel bathroom floor

and, in the circumstances,

the least you could do

is not leave me here with my howling head

wedged in your bastard cat flap.
KEVIN HIGGINS is The Bogmans Cannon satirist-in-residence

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