CLOWN HOURS, 24/7
Do you need a balloon dog or
giraffe or snake? Silly joke, honk,
please, he is a professional.
Would you like some dubious jokes
that will ruin yet another
family party? If bad taste
is a red flag, then string up the
bunting, make your grandfather proud.
Follow him not to the empty
Toys R Us, where lights still flicker
but shelves are bare. Forgotten, he
squats by a camping stove, stirring
solemnly until you enter –
he stumbles and swears and mutters
oh shit oh damn oh fuck my soup
eyes wide, he stares, then looks away.
Hiding his face behind soup-stained
fingers, he weeps into endless
handkerchiefs – now look what you’ve done.
No one should see a silly man
without his silly makeup, please,
don’t make him beg, and don’t tell the
other clowns. It’s against the rules,
he says, and Ronald is a snitch.
Rowan Smith (he/they) is a working class, queer writer and artist from Northern England. He enjoys writing strange, spooky poems and short stories, and is currently studying to become a librarian. Twitter: @scatter_bones.