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I close the curtains behind, the darkness now complete,

Then hide up in the window, for the night the sills a seat,

A friendly pad and pencil to mark the sounds I hear,

There's soldiers in the garden the danger could be near,

A couple of explosions in the distance far away,

Maybe these brave soldiers will live another day,

A little burst of gunfire the flashes just in sight,

To mark it in the pad and wish them safe that night,

Time for still and quiet not to move at all,

Because all these soldiers have guns that break a wall,

Looking at the faces of them that can be seen,

The fear is etched like granite into every seam,

Yet they still keep going not one makes to stop,

They look out for each other in a way that we can't top,

The soldiers keep on moving off into the night,

Soon it's only darkness and fuel to feed the fright,

The hours pass by slowly left wondering if that's it,

Knowing that tomorrow will make me recommit,

Our fathers were those soldiers keeping us ok,

So that we as padbrats could all grow old someday.

                       Belfast  1969.

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