Cruel and Unusual


If you have committed a capital crime

Where the death penalty does apply,

Then it's my intention to tell in this rhyme

Just a few of the ways you could die.


They've varied throughout the course of histor-ee

And most of these things aren't too nice,

But needless to say, it's no big myster-ee

That these fates would make you think twice.


They could burn you in public or boil you in oil

Or break all your bones on a wheel,

Inter you alive in a mountain of soil,

Or crushing – a horrid ordeal.


There was such a punishment not long ago

When hanging was what they would do.

An ''extra'' (it's totally optional, though)

They could draw you and quarter you too!


The old ducking stool or by walking the plank -

A couple of ways you could drown.

And one for those persons of military rank:

The firing squad could take you down.


There was gassing, and flaying, and stoning to death;

Immurement until you are dead.

And here is a good way to take your last breath:

Axe or guillotine (cuts off your head!)


Now these days the lethal injection's in vogue

Replacing Old Sparky (the Chair)

But if in your life you have not been a rogue

Then none of these need you beware!

The End

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