Nothing Out of Place

It’s funny how the most unneighborly feelings come from neighbors. 

In fact, 

I guess, 

they have to. 

What a paradox; 

I feel high

just thinking about that. 

Some kind of Zen bullshit for sure. 

They don’t want us here;

our weird yard 

with our wild banana stand and 

winter-naked figs and peach trees. 

Sticks and twigs and poor people food. 

A mess is what they see, I guess. 

I’m out weeding just now 

(oh yes, I weed) 

and I see some neighbors walking,

disgusted looks

behind dark sunglasses.

They walk past and, 

to be neighborly, 

I smile and nod and they, all at once, 

see me and then look away, 

pretending not to have seen me. 


I must have that wrong. 

That makes me feel insane. 

You can hire a lawn-cocktail truck

to come every week and 

eradicate all the life in the soil and,

in short order the lake,

put cute, little plastic signs along the sidewalk,

telling me to keep kids and pets off the lawn until dry or

they’ll be poisoned, too, naturally,

like that’s normal and ok,

but my bananas and dormant peach trees personally offend you to the point where you refuse even to acknowledge my existence. I want to tear around banging on doors and scream at the top of my lungs demanding to know where everyone thinks all the masses of frogs and toads might have gone and reminding people that squirrels and birds can’t read and that this is fucking Florida! FLORIDA for God-sake! Florida should be humming, a-swath 

in a shimmering, gossamer veil of insects

and bats or birds and, 

underfoot, more, 

with lizards or geckos 

and frogs and toads trailing

along the leaf litter and sidewalks.  

The nights are growing quieter and quieter 

as The Nothing keeps consuming, 

so happy these days, 

sipping a bevvy on the deck 

watching the technicolor sunset 

behind the peaceful, peaceful lake. 

It’s getting to be so still, 


so perfect around here. 


out of place. 

What strange times are these 

we have made, 

but I don’t wanna seem unneighborly. 

House for sale, 

by owner. 

Call me. 

No, really.

Walking back from dinner, I see some shadowy trash-looking outline in the middle of the street under one of those old, super orangey sodium-vapor street lights and, before I can think, something has me running out in front of a car, trying to keep calm and patiently coaxing these two into my hands. Car didn’t even touch its brakes. Humans are so strange. Makes me think of that one Beatles’ song and now I finally have a decent answer: because you could be hit by a car.