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Bee Trees by Rolli | Word Riot
Flash Fiction

June 15, 2011      

Bee Trees by Rolli

Listen to a reading of “Bee Trees” by Rolli.

I was wheeling through the trees, on the wheelchair path, just in awe of the trees, when I realized their leaves were black and yellow, and were actually bees.
     Life is hard when you’re a wheeler, I mean a wheelchair person, but the hardest thing about life, I find, is wheeling away from angry bees.
     They covered me. I was head to toe bees. Like a beard of bees, only over my whole body. I flopped right out of the chair. It felt like they were eating my skin.
     After about 5 minutes, they flew off. But then one fat one came back and stung me in the eye. This made me sad, as a cat had eaten my other eye when I was a baby.
     When I told Brenda, the woman at the hospital, about how it felt like they had eaten my skin off, these bees, she laughed and said, “Oh, but they did eat your skin! You have no skin now.”
     It was all over the newspapers, the television. “Blind Wheeler Kid With NO SKIN.” I was a celebrity for about a year. I’m still pretty famous. The gifts keep coming. Parents who feel guilty about having had normal children, with skin, send me snacks and gifts. A day hardly passes without Brenda swinging by with a cardboard box, and dumping a fresh load of packages into my containment unit.
     I love the public. I really do. At the same time, I’m squatting at the bottom of my containment unit, with all this junk on top of me, trying not to get crushed to death.
     So my point is, guilt is real. It’s a real thing. It weighs about 1200 lbs, I’d say. And counting.

About the author:

Rolli writes – and draws a little – for adults (SmokeLong, Quarterly West, New York Tyrant) and children (Ladybug, Spider, Highlights). He’s the author/illustrator of the tasty poetry/art book Plum Stuff (Montreal: 8th House Publishing), and the forthcoming collections God’s Autobio (short stories), and Mavor’s Bones (poems/drawings). Visit his blog (, and follow his epic tweets @rolliwrites.

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