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Bob Skeele

If you were born before 1937
you need not remove your shoes
or your light jacket.

So read the sign on the wall at the airport
just before the security check began.
At first I was surprised and pleased.
Having to remove laced shoes,
on top of everything else,
is certainly a drag.
Removing my belt, wallet, loose change
and keys, not to mention taking my laptop
out of its case and placing it in a
separate bin,
is bad enough,
particularly when you're in a hurry
to catch a flight.
But soon, my pleasure turned to anger.
Are persons like myself,
over 75 years of age,
perceived to be so old and weak
that we no longer constitute a threat,
could not create havoc
even if we wanted to?
How dare they!
Hey! I could still do a lot of damage
at 85 years of age but just what
I'm not sure.
Which is exactly why
my anger has turned to mellow.
I don't think in terms of terror
and harm any longer,
except for a just war.
I've had too much experience.
I know now that there is,
most always,
another, gentler way,


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