Tohm Bakelas works as a social worker in a psychiatric hospital. He is the singer of Permanent Tension and runs Forced Abandonment Records when he feels like it. He was born in New Jersey, currently resides there, and will die there.
these keys once opened doors
and perhaps more grimly
locked the same
what was behind these doors?
family members, friends, lovers?
the guilty and the innocent
the mistaken and the misdiagnosed
the lost and the damned
unnecessary medical procedures
in the name of psychiatric improvement
lobotomies, insulin shock
the print shop, horticulture
the swimming pool, the kitchen
wards for men and wards for women
stone walls up to three feet thick
these keys are silent witnesses
to a few hundred years of screams
and to the forgotten lost souls
that were restrained, cured, or improved
of a now demolished kirkbride
which itself is now a ghost
lost upon the imprint of time.