Aside written by Mike Bell at



written by: Mike Bell



It exists, today, another foul descent,
where thousands of sick acts are set:
Saydnaya, Assad’s concrete playhouse,
a spectacle, directed from Damascus,
with nefarious rehearsal rooms for Death.

Blindfolded, a man stands a metre above,
as if waiting on the prompt’s lost cue,
but he prays fast inside, his last lines,
knowing this, now, is his unseen drop,
having heard the rehearsed ropes:

On the floors overhead there is no God,
instead a dark ark of beaten, unequal men,
left half alive by guards and almost here,
woken by the screams of the sideshow
down below, which always over-runs.

A last series of kicks in strangulation:
The skinny ones flail, some half-done,
their weight does not always work as well:
Under a pointed direction, all of it is,
their legs are grabbed, a last pull on breath.

And we will watch, the streamed audience,
the dig and lift of thousands of bodies
from under loose mounds in deserts;
and the long dead will be disturbed
in the revival of evil’s latest show.

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