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In His Own Way

I feel I’m in heaven when
I hear that music, Father said,
Sitting in the chair in the garden,
Recovering from some old illness,
Hearing the Couperin organ masses
Playing through the open window
From your old black and red hi-fi
Record player. He was nearer to
Heaven than he thought, cancer
Was creeping through him like a
Silent snake. He didn’t go much on
Your Ornette Coleman’s alto runs
And tweaks of free jazz; what racket’s
That he’d say, trying to snooze in the
Afternoon sun, his companion Death
Lingering by, waiting for him in his
Own time to die. The garden’s empty
Now; his chair vacated, no more of
Couperin organ masses or Coleman’s
Free jazz playing out from an open
Window on a summer’s day, just birds
Singing nature songs across the way.

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