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A few nights ago, the fire alarm battery in my 11-year-old daughter's bedroom began to die. As is the norm with these things, it began to chirp. Unfortunately for us, it started chirping at midnight. So the entire household was awake and I was climbing a ladder in a maddening attempt to stop the chirping as quickly as possible. I was puzzled by the chirping because I was told by the home's previous owner that the fire alarms were hard-wired into the electrical system of the house. I guess this battery is a backup in case the lights go out.

As the chirping was constant for a while, it felt to me that I was living in an Edgar Allan Poe work. I am not sure if it was "A Tell-Tale Heart" or "The Raven" but I was definitely experiencing some Poe-like vibes.

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I slumbered, warm and cheery,

Quietly and comfortably trying to prevent the faintest snore --

While I lay there peacefully napping, suddenly there came a rapping,

As of someone gently tapping, tapping on my shoulder with a chore.

"Tis a dream," I muttered, "not someone tapping with a chore --

Only this and nothing more."

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,

My dear bride truly your forgiveness I implore;

But the fact is I was napping and so gently you came tapping,

This in turn startling me and causing me to reply with a roar.

I was dreaming and thought that it was the darkness and nothing more.

Back into the daughter's chamber, I staggered with some anger,

Soon I heard the chirping somewhat louder than before.

Surely said I, this is something a button push can address;

Let me see, then, what the threat is, and this mystery explore --

Tis a flashing light and nothing more!

Twisting open the machine, I uttered words obscene,

In there chirping loudly was a Siren as mentioned before;

Not the least obeisance made it; not a minute stopped or stayed it.

It continued to blare, this rude excuse for décor.

Startled at the stillness broken my reply loudly spoken,

"Shut up" said I. "We don't want to hear this anymore!"

This unmerciful disaster is causing quite the unhappy master.

I attempted to find the battery to stop this incessant uproar.

But the Siren still beguiling all my patience quickly frying,

Finally, I found the long-sought battery compartment door.

I flung open the latch and quickly the old battery I dispatched

Hoping to quiet the Siren's dreaded encore.

Quote the Siren ...


Be that sound truly smarting. I shrieked "You fiend," upstarting --

Climbing once again on the wobbling ladder I grasped at the battery trapdoor.

Pulling a new battery unbroken from the pack with curses spoken.

Sliding the new energy source into the device's corridor.

Take thy shriek from my heart, and let me return to slumber once more.

Quote the Siren ...


And the Siren, still is peeping, never stopping, still is tweeting

I ascend the ladder once again determined my anger to outpour.

The red light blinking like a demon that is dreaming.

I rip the alarm from its mooring and cast it violently to the floor.

Now the vile machine can torment me no more.

Quote the Siren ...


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