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Poem for my Da-

My father is old
And noise has started to bother him
He is in good health generally
Not just for a man in his late 70s
His knee gives him a little pain
Now and then
But noise is what has started to bother him

He sleeps very well
He has always been able to do that
But noise now
Has started to bother him
He walked the beat for years
He rode around in a Garda car
The smelliest place on earth
He spent an age in the underground
holding cells of the Bridewell police station in the North inner city of Dublin
So he has been called everything under the sun
He has heard it all
Shouted and angry and desperate and afraid
And Insane
He has heard it all
And he could always sleep and forget
But noise now has started to bother him.

Someone fired a gun near his ear
And noise bothers him now
It makes him angry and short tempered
I don’t think he has much religion left
We don’t talk about that
Noise bothers him though
He tells me that
We walk his old beats
Sometimes
Separately or together
But noise bothers him

He doesn’t trust politicians
“When you
See killers come to power
How can you?”
He turns off the radio when the news is on
Noise bothers him

He still listens to music
The classical kind
But less and less these days
Because noise bothers him

It’s not much
Not much of a problem
For a man his age
It’s just that the world is so noisy these days
And noise bothers him

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