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Space to Think, a new book celebrating ten years of the Dublin Review of Books More Information 

The Tenth Circle of Hell

This new and exciting circle of hell – under construction and expected to come in below budget - will be a very special place adjacent to the sullen waters of the river Styx. It has been designed to punish a particularly obnoxious subset of fools: those who took steps of massive consequence, without even the semblance of a plan.

Boris Johnson will be there, as will Michael Gove, Nigel Farage, David Davis and many many more. Some previously housed in other circles will be moved to the new region.


At the rickety English table, the damned will sit around all day eating slices of spam spread thickly with out-of-date Marmite and soaked in lukewarm milky tea drawn from a vast and sooty urn. Beneath the table the owner of Weatherspoons and other business supporters of Brexit will be crawling about gobbling up the bits of pap that fall from the mouths of the squawking former public school boys.

At the top of the table Jacob Rees-Mogg will be complaining bitterly over his consignment to hell. Boris Johnson will be telling him to shut the f—k up.  And each day of the week these inmates of hell will rail at the absence from their company of others they regard as equally poor planners.

Why isn’t John Lennon here? Where is Lady Diana, they will wail on a Monday, and why is Robert Emmet not here they will demand on the following day as they are obliged to permanently stuff their mouths with the unending vile slop served by prancing black devils with swishing tails who, eventually and as night falls, will answer the pleading questions with a squeal of – naturally enough - hellish laughter: “ Because this place is for fools.”

Image: Michael Gove: I've got a good idea.

7/2/2019