‘I want to break the walls of ignorance’,
Raif Badawi posted in his blog –
they threw him in a cell to teach him sense.
How simple Raif’s requests: freedom of speech,
the rights of women and minorities –
what platitudes to have to preach.
Raif’s wretched, filthy, lice-infested jail
with its stinking toilets and obscene graffiti,
has, he discovers on a sticky wall,
words that re-charge his resolution.
He reads with great astonishment
that ‘Secularism is the solution!’ –
exactly what he’d written in his blog –
and Raif Badawi’s fetid Saudi prison
fills for a moment with pure oxygen.