They said he was born to listen. By the time he was 10, he could hear a conversation two rooms away. By the time he was 12, he could hear a whisper from across the city. So he took to wearing things around his ears to block out the noise. He didn’t want to hear the sounds of the city, the honking of horns, the jackhammer pounding on the pavement, or the electric currents that wound its way across the city like a monotonous hum. He didn’t want to listen to everyone’s whispered prayers or arguments over every conceivable thing. He didn’t want their lies and their complaints. He wondered if this was how God felt and he wondered if there were days that God wanted to drown out all the noise people made through the centuries. Maybe this was why he found it difficult to pray. He didn’t want to add to the noise. But despite all this, what he found worse than the constant and deafening barrage of sound, was being able to hear the whispers behind his back and the laughter and jeers that hurt like knives.