Monday, November 2, 2015


Note: This prologue to the forthcoming English version of "Dead End Street" by Slobodan R. Mitric is scheduled to be recited by the publisher Robert Jan Kelder during the commemoration of the murde of Theo van Gogh on November 2, 2015 in front of the monument The Scream in Oosterpark in Amsterdam East. 

Today is a day like any other; Javastraat is as usual full of passers-by, yet there is something else going on. All shop entrances on both sides of the Street are decorated with garlands of different flowers. The shopkeepers dressed in festive clothes are standing as straight as candles in front of their stores. From Java Square, on the left side until the tunnel, thousands of fragrant roses are spread out on the pavement. A young Moroccan dressed in royal Islamic clothing, like a figure from the fairy tale Thousand and One Night, surrounded by handsome fellow countrymen acting as his bodyguard, strides slowly over the flower-strewn steps of Java Square to the tunnel. The shopkeepers bow low before him. Approaching him one by one they kneel on the pavement, kiss his hand, and then anxiously, as if they fear it is not enough, they release rolls of European banknotes in the same hand.

The Prince of Death deftly hands the gift to one of his companions, bows to the giver, who humbly goes to the side, and calmly walks on.

In front of a laundry mat with address number 51 stands a fairly large Arab. His beard reaches almost to his waist. When the Prince of Death nears his shop, a plain-looking Arab - he looks like he accidentally ended up here - comes between the Prince and the bearded Arab.

One of the companions of the Prince of Death - built like the mythological God Atlas - grabs the unfortunate passerby and throws him like a rag doll to the side. The unfortunate man folds like a ripe pumpkin against the wall of the shop and after gathering himself goes, constantly excusing himself, away in direction of Java Square.

The bearded Arab bows to the ground. First he kisses the feet of the Prince of Death, and slowly getting up, gently takes the hand of the Prince, kisses it and fills it with a big bundle of bank notes...

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