Who Is the Clown? by Ida Saudkova, ca 2000



i’m sitting in a

treatment team meeting

listening to a

floridly psychotic patient

speak absolute nonsense

and watch him

shake from the years of



and self-abuse


and as he rambles on

laughing to himself

i begin to wonder

what separates

him from me

and me from him


i only figured it out

after he reaches

under my chair

picks up my fallen keys

and places them

in my hand


About the Author:

Tohm Bakelas is a social worker in a psychiatric hospital. He was born in New Jersey, resides there, and will die there. His poems have appeared in numerous journals, zines, and online publications. He is the author of several chapbooks and a full length book of poetry. His work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and he intends to conquer the small press and exclusively publish within. More at  https://tohmbakelaspoetry.wordpress.com or Instagram: @flexyourhead


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