A Man in Need

by Niall Cunniffe

It was the Christmas of 1939 and I had just been let go. I carried myself down O'Connell street but I succumbed to the pressure. There I lay, outside the Post Office, head in my hands. Not even the soft company of snow flakes on my hand distracted my mind. Then, I heard a faint thudding on the snow.

He was a small man, lost in an overcoat. His eyes were sad, surveying my miserable presence. He must have been curious then to know why a man in a suit would be slouched on the ground. "Bad day?" he asked. I gazed back, intrigued by the street lights illuminating his deep wrinkles and the immense bags drooping from his eyes. He sighed as my lips attempted to muster the words, "Yes, horrible to say the least." Nodding, the man approached me and soon we were both slouched together on the ground.

"When I saw you coming from your office you looked like a man in need of some help," explained the man, who had told me his name was Patrick. His voice was so weakened by the winter that every sound he ushered knocked any hope inside me, yet every word filled the empty void in my heart. He was the man in need of help and this thought continued to haunt me. "Why did you rest here? Don't you have a home?" I looked behind me to the great doors of the G.P.O and then to the pillars soaring to the blackened sky. "I just felt it was the right place to gather my thoughts," I explained.

"The way you look upon this place, I can tell it holds a meaning for you. Am I right?" Patrick asked and indeed he was.

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