I recall that we took care of him one evening
we took him out the back and we broke his fucking balls
The Pogues, ‘Boys from the County Hell’

After getting off outside the rented gaff in Palmerstown
they, the Kurdish twins, Latif and Khalid, went on in and found

the back door open, and the landlord’s wide-screen TV and his
microwave and his DVD and his stereo with the 5.1 surround

all gone , and on a white tile in the centre of the kitchen floor
the icing was a warm, steaming half-pound squiggle of shit.

What a compliment! So they got on the landline to the landlord
and though they didn’t really have enough of the English to explain (see it

was their near fluent cousin Tariq, who made all the arrangements
for the house), still they did their faltering, st-stuttering pidgin

damnedest to communicate the unwelcome event taken place—
though the crap, they agreed, would just be too indecorous to mention.

Took all of 35 minutes for the landlord to burn up the road from Naas,
by which the lads had both had to flee twice up the stairs to spew up their lunch,

from shovelling that mess up. The perfume of course they couldn’t get rid of,
and when the landlord addressed them in sentences punctured with snorts, grunts

and tut-tuts, the two boys assumed invisible spores had this measured
young man in a suit so irate. He seemed to use the wrong parts of his throat.

So they nodded and were jollied when he announced something like he’d return anon
to fix it all up, and took the instruction to sit tight and wait

and by now anyways the stink it was fading, or were they just getting
used? The nose is a merciful beast; how else could anyone keep

down their food when they, like, live in a dump, or sewer, or trench?
Well half an hour on Mr Landlord strode in at the head of a slew of Gardaí

who proceeded to read out caution and rights while cuffing Latif and Khalid
who of course didn’t have a balls notion what the Gardaí were saying, and with the height

of fear and frustration began loud pleadings in Farsi, but their pleadings,
which I suppose in this climate is hardly surprising, were not heard quite

rightly, the coppers deciding to take them for threats and abuse, which
in themselves are gravely offensive, and add a great deal of weight to a charge sheet.

And what happened next? And what were they like? Was there kicking and biting
or did they go quiet? Were they were hauled out in full view of their street?

Were they too proud to cry? Did they shake? Did colour drain
out through cracks in their skin the way water is parched from a lake?