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Sep 2018
As the night nurse
let me into the ward
the noise hit me
like something
from Hell.

He closed the door
behind me
and I wandered
further into the ward.

A group
of the mentally insane
surrounded me
wanting to shake my hand
to touch me
yelling various greetings
as I walk past them
to the nurse's office.

The male nurse
gruffly told them
to shove off
and they disbursed
out of sight.

Got to keep them
in order
he said
gathering his things.

As long as you
are here I can go
he said.

He left and the door
shut behind him.

One by one
the patients came
to the door and stared
and smiled
or grinned weirdly.

I spoke to them
and walked around the ward
one or two followed me
down the passageway
as I walked past dormitories
with unmade beds
and the smell of *****
and bodies.

One of the patients
touched my sleeve
nervously.

We make the beds
he said
me and Gough.

He followed me
back to the ward
muttering news
of this and that
and in his eyes
saw emptiness
and vacant spaces
and sighed seeing
that in many
of their faces.
Terry Collett
Written by
Terry Collett  72/M/England
(72/M/England)   
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