The Pyro, the Drugstore and the Lie

I remember
when i was young.
I would walk
to the drugstore.
Magazines and candy
were always awaiting.
my friend from school
would join me.

We would head down
to the drugstore together.
He always tried to cause trouble,
and this one time went too far.
We bought some candy,
read some magazines
and finally left.
We walked around
to the back of the drugstore,
and saw an overflowing dumpster.
Paper and cardboard boxes
covered the ground around it.
I kept walking
and noticed my friend
wasn’t with me.

I turned around to find
my friend entranced
with the fire he started.
He shoved paper in a box
and lit it.
I remember it to this day.
How he was entranced by the flames.
I ran over and stomped out the fire.
He laughed and was mad
I took his fire away.
It was a fixation,
even then,
I knew was sick.

We went back
to the drugstore later
that day.
The owner pulled us aside
and asked if we knew anything
about a fire being started out back.
We lied,
and said we didn’t know anything.
I knew if the truth came out,
my friend would have been sent somewhere.
He seemed to have turned out alright.
He’s been a fireman
for the last fifteen years.

©Copyright 2006 by Kurt Rees.
All rights reserved


Behind the Doors

Behind the doors
is an experience
awaiting your arrival.
Your friends said they
would meet you at the bar.
You tell them
you don’t like crowds,
but are willing to toughen up
and make it there tonight.
You get a little closer
and your heart beats faster.
Standing in line is killing you,
and being that it’s cold outside,
doesn’t help.

The people in front of you
move up as you see
the couple ahead of them
open the two doors.
You stand on your tip toes
trying to catch a glimpse
of what it looks like,
behind the doors.
Boisterous laughing
and the chiming of glasses
are all you can hear or see.
The man quickly waves
the couple
in front of you through.
The wait is almost over.
Your heart starts to pound
harder and harder,
knowing that you are next in line.
The man waives you on
and your forehead starts to bead up.

You open the door,
walk in,
and realize how
disgusting this place
looks on the inside.
All the hype you were told
didn’t match what you see.
You want to make the best of it,
but your heart beats faster.
The walls close in,
and the cold sweat beads up more.
Your nerves start to overwhelm,
you start to get dizzy,
but can’t find a place to settle.
Too many people around
and now the roof feels
as though it is slowly collapsing.
Your nerves start to
make you dizzy.

The loud laughing,
the clanging glass
starts to echo in your head.
Your heart pounds
through your chest.
You need air,
and you exit the door
from where you came.
You take two deep breaths
and start to walk away,
Knowing that you are alright now,
and that the attack has left.

©Copyright 2013 by Kurt Rees.
All rights reserved

When I First Wake Up

I wake up
and go to the bathroom.
It was five minutes
before my alarm went off,
so I turned off the alarm
and took a piss.

I finish
and wash my hands.
I look in the mirror.
My hair is everywhere,
my eyes have luggage
under them,
and I am breaking out,
with acne I haven’t seen
since I was a teenager.

It made me think back
to an old girlfriend,
and one
of the most beautiful moments
I can ever remember.

I woke up one morning
and she had beaten me up.
She was looking right at me
from a foot away.

My sleepy eyes slowly opened
to see her blond hair,
and the sunlight
shining through the window,
hitting her hair just right.

I remember her blue eyes
and how they glistened,
when the same sunlight
met them.

The smile,
and oh,
what a smile.
It is one that I will
never forget.
That one moment,
my sleepy eyes swear
her smile
shined brighter than the sun.
It has been almost ten years
since that happened,
and her look that morning is
still burned into my memory.

Now I wake up to this
bad hair,
baggy eyes,
nose hair,
and a face that is begging
to be shaved.

I guess
you have to see ugly
once in a while,
in order to appreciate
real beauty.

©Copyright 2013 by Kurt Rees.
All rights reserved

Conscience of Darkness (Old Short Story)

It’s a day like any other blazing, hot summer day. I have been trying to get the new topsoil around these rosebushes for what seems like hours now. My lavender rosebush and the others have been in desperate need of attention lately and I finally have the time to tend to them. I have dug a mini trench around the lavender rosebush’s base with the hope that the bag of topsoil I bought for it will help it thrive here in the near future.
As I break open the bag of topsoil. A gentleman in a light colored suit is walking from my next door neighbor’s house. My eyes fixate on him for a moment with the hope that he will walk past me, but I am not that fortunate.
“Hello, may I have a word with you sir?”
“Sure, what is it about?”
“Let me introduce myself. I am Detective Jones with Columbus Homicide.”
I am startled that a detective would want to talk to me and it shows.
“Oh, what happened?”
“We were called by your next door neighbor’s family. They stated that they haven’t seen Mr. Robinson in a few weeks. I just came over to see if you knew anything that could shed some light on the situation.”
I take my ball cap off and wipe my brow with the front of my shirt and throw my cap back on.
“Do you care if we go inside? I want to get something to drink.”
“Not at all. By the way, I never did get your name.”
“Charlie, Charlie Wells. Nice meeting you, detective. I would shake your hand, but my hands are filthy with all this dirt.”
He smiles.
I make my way to the front door with Jones right behind me. As I open the front door and walk in, I turn around to make sure Jones is right behind me. I kick off my shoes as he steps inside and shuts the door. I head to the dining table for the hand towel I set aside earlier for the sweaty head I knew I would have today. Jones keeps his distance from me. I anticipate him being right behind me when I turn and ask him.
“Can I get you a soda detective?”
“I’m fine. What can you tell me about Mr. Robinson?”
I go to the fridge and am in eyeshot of Jones the entire time. I feel the heat radiate off my neck from his intense stare. My nerves start to get to me as I pull a soda out of the fridge and open it. Does he think I did something to him? I take a quick sip, throw my cap on the table and wipe my brow once more before answering.
“What would you like to know?”
“I just wanted to get an idea if you had seen anything suspicious lately. I noticed you have the best looking roses in the neighborhood. I thought with you being outside a bit and next door to him, you may have caught a conversation of his.”
He does think I’m guilty!
“Detective, I can’t think of anything at the moment. He wasn’t the talkative type. We both kept to ourselves and didn’t talk much.”
I glance into Jones’ eyes for a brief second to catch the intense stare he has for me, then I answer him.
“He moved in about six months ago. We never really met until he had been living there for a couple months. I gave him soft waves after that, as he would walk his dog past my house, but we never really talked.”
Jones takes out a pad of paper from the pocket inside his blazer. He reads a few things to himself and responds.
“That’s not what your neighbor’s are telling me.”
“Oh really? What are they saying?”
“They are saying you both would get into yelling matches around midnight on a few occasions.”
“It’s that damn dog of his. He would let it out to pee and it would start barking at rabbits it could see in the distance. It became annoying and after the millionth time I ripped into him.”
Jones stares at me and says,
“You told him you would kill the dog if he didn’t do something about it?”
I start to chuckle for a moment, knowing full well I would never hurt the animal.
“Do you have kids detective?”
“Have you told them you would kill them if they kept screaming in the car?”
Detective Jones starts to smile a bit, knowing full well I was right.
“It’s a moot point anyway detective. Ron took care of the situation.”
“So you do know his first name?”
“Of course, we did meet you know?”
Jones starts down another path.
“Did you hear anything about him going out of town recently?”
“Not a thing. I have noticed that he hasn’t been around lately, but that happened a few times. I heard he was a salesman. He would be gone for days, sometimes weeks at a time.”
Jones’ stare intensifies as I take a long sip of my soda. My heart starts beating faster. I keep sweating and take the towel and wipe my forehead with it. I swear he thinks I’m guilty! Jones walks closer to me and I almost lose control of my mind. Is he going to arrest me? He puts the notepad back into his pocket and hands me his business card.
“Let me know if you hear anything Mr. Wells.”
“I will detective.”
Jones walks to the front door. I slip my shoes on and follow him outside.
“You do have the prettiest rosebushes I have ever seen Mr. Wells. How do you get them to bloom this beautifully?”
“Thanks, you can call me Charlie, detective. It’s just the attention I give them. I’m a writer, so I have extra time to spend on them, unlike the nine to five Joe.”
Jones walks down the front walkway, back to his car across the way.
“Charlie, call me if you hear anything.”
“I will.”
He waves to me and I return the gesture and get back on my knees in front of the rosebush. I start throwing more topsoil down as I hear Jones’ car take off down the road. I wonder if he realized that I didn’t let my conscience speak for me. Does he really believe me when I said my extra attention helped my rosebushes? I start to chuckle.
What conscience?

This Grocery Sucks

I’m waiting in line at the grocery,
and some jerk cut in front of me.

They smile with a shit look,
“I only have a few items,
you don’t mind, do you?”

It actually is a few items,
and I let it go this time.
I am having a good day,
and I won’t let this jerk ruin it.

I finally get to the register.
The girl working it is so young,
and looks to still be in high school.
She has tats running up both arms.
“Pretty nice day, isn’t it?”
She looks at me and nods with approval.
She is letting her teenage, angsty arms
speak for her today.

I pay her and walk away,
wondering what parent
would allow that young of a daughter
get permanent tattoos.

As I walk out the door
I hear a kid tell his mom to,
“Fuck off.”
My mouth dropped.
I was waiting for the mom to
backhand him,
but she didn’t.
I shook my head,
knowing the ass-cracking
I would have received
if I would have said that
to one of my parents.

I finally get in my car
and shut the door.
I close my eyes and enjoy
the silence.
I take a deep breath,
knowing that I am alone
and it is quiet.
I start the car
and pull away.

The jerk that cut in front of me
in the grocery line,
just cut in front of me
getting out of the grocery
parking lot.

Now I understand why people go crazy
and shoot up a place like this.
I don’t agree with it,
but I sure as hell understand it.

The thing that sucks for me,
I have four more places to go
before I can head home.

©Copyright 2013 by Kurt Rees.
All rights reserved

The Critic

I have this habit,
it is placing printed pages
on the floor.
I will sort through numerous
poems and stories
and put them in piles,
good in one pile
and bad in the next.

My dog came in to say hi.
I pet her behind the ear
and she walked out of the room.
I went back to review my work.
A poem that I couldn’t bring myself
to like,
went into the good pile anyway.

The next four went into the bad pile.
At that time I went to the bathroom.
When I came back,
I noticed a big yellow puddle
on the poem I placed in the good pile.

I didn’t know my dog could read.

Needless to say,
the poem went immediately into
the bad pile.

©Copyright 2013 by Kurt Rees.
All rights reserved

Red Stained Concrete

I was around 7 years old
and my next door friend
wanted to ride bikes.
He told me to follow him.

Once we arrived
at a mechanic’s shop
about a mile away,
we saw multiple red stains
on the concrete walk
at the front door.

He told me that the owner
was shot
and killed
at that very spot
a couple days before.

It was my first experience
with death.
I was almost ill
looking at all the red stains.
It was weird looking
at all that human fuel
splattered everywhere.

We finally left,
but I still remember that moment.
I also remember going back
every so often,
until the stains disappeared
from the weather,
and the excitement
eventually wore down.

This happened almost 40 years ago.
The stains have gone,
and the building has since been
but the memory of red stains
and a disgusting story
still remains.

©Copyright 2013 by Kurt Rees.
All rights reserved

Their Own World

They welcome you,
whenever they see you.
All of them act
as though you’re missed.

The bar you frequented,
always had people in it
that all acted as though
they were your best friend.

I always hung out
and made good friends
with a handful of them.
I would even hangout with them
at their houses sometimes.

This happened when I had my own
I would spend my time at the bar
during the day,
and work at night.

Over time I would know
many people,
business men, single moms, drunks,
business owners and people barely
making it through life.
Only a handful of them
I would have considered good friends.

When business was bad
I decided to get a job.
My working hours were early,
from 7am to 4pm,
so I decided to stay away from the bar
for the first few weeks.
I wanted to adjust to the new schedule.

During those couple of weeks,
I noticed that nobody called me.
I would check the phone
but nobody called
to see how I was,
or if I was dead.

I tried to call a few of them,
but would always
get voice mail
and they would never call back.
After a while,
I gave up,
and quit leaving messages.
When a couple of months went by,
I quit trying altogether.

It has been almost two years
since I started this job.
I have been back to the bar
a handful of times since,
and everyone calls me by my name
and nobody sits with me,
or asks me how I am.

They all act as though
I deserted them.
I felt bad going in there
the first few times.
It felt like I was trespassing
on holy ground.

I finally realized
it is a different world
once you enter through the door.
A world where the drunk
can get a drink,
the single mom
can get away from her kids
for a moment.
It is a place where
business owners go
to conduct business,
where business men go
to hang with co-workers,
and where people
barely making it through life,
hide in the shadows
of the place.

I now know
that I don’t need their
world anymore.
I have been alone at times
since I left two years ago,
but I know now
that I was more alone
being with them all.

©Copyright 2013 by Kurt Rees.
All rights reserved

Thank You!

fly on the wall
I want to thank all of you for your kind words. I am sorry for not posting many poems over the last few weeks.

I have been getting the new version of “Fly on the Wall” into gear. It will not be your typical poetry book. When editing is completed it will be around 500 pages. Once ready for market release, it should be available in book and e-book format.

I can’t stand poetry books that have 40 poems in them and costs a fortune. This book will be more than worth the price. I have collected writings over the last ten years, most are poems I sent to magazines and contests over that time-frame. I weeded out hundreds of poems and placed the best ones I could into this large collection.

I will keep posting new work on here. I did take many of my writings down due to “clutter” and because they will be in the new book.

Final editing is being done now, and I expect to have Fly on the Wall available between mid to late July. I hope you all will like it.

Thanks again for following and for all your kind words!


Doggie Style

A long day,
and I walk into the house.
I flip the light and see
my dog.
She wags her tail and barks.
I walk toward her
and she lays on her back,
a trusting one.

I bend over
and rub her belly
as she licks my hand.
someone is glad to see me today.
I smile as I kick off my shoes.
I sit on the sofa as she meets me,
licking my face.
Her happiness is shown in actions,
and no words are necessary.

I wish a dog on anyone that is lonely.
No matter how bad the day,
you will always go to bed
knowing somebody loves
and misses you.

It shows in their lick.

©Copyright 2008 by Kurt Rees.
All rights reserved