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The Awful Things I Must See

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The Awful Things I Must See


Patrolling the streets on the west side of town

The radio is busy dispatching a fairly normal sound

My thoughts were on Christmas, only a few weeks away

The gifts I needed to buy before the big day


Suddenly my thoughts of Christmas were shut completely down

By a radio call on my side of town

I could hear it in the dispatchers tone

The call was bad from what was known


An auto accident on a stretch of road

A tanker truck about to explode

Two cars involved, passengers thrown around

As I arrived I saw bodies on the ground


A quick assessment of the dreadful scene

Four dead bodies, they appeared to be teens

My gut is wrenching at what I see

Childrens lifeless bodies lying among the debris


Please God, let this be a dream

But this time no answer I want to scream

That smell, so familiar, surely alcohol

I already know it is responsible for this all


Determine what did happen sift through this mess

The next task I have I really do detest

Notifying parents that their child is dead

No matter what words I choose, it is every parents dread


Alone in my patrol car once again, the radio is calm for now

The tragedy Ive witnessed tonight, my memory cant disavow

Young lives ended so much is lost

If only that center line they had not crossed


I hope I never have to see another scene

Involving injury or death to another teen

I know my hope is not likely to be

So God guide me through the awful things I must see


ŠKent Fletcher November 23, 2007




Kent Fletcher retired as Deputy Chief of the Durham NC Police Dept.  He served with that department for 301/2 years.  He is a graduate of the 162nd session of the FBI National Academy and has an AA and BS degree in Justice Administration from Guilford College.  Writing short stories and poetry has become a part-time hobby.  He ca be reached at hkfletcher@nc.rr.com

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