Dreaming a Wall

He hates his neighbors’ flowers, claims his
are redder, bluer, whiter than theirs, believes
his bees work harder, his soil richer, blacker.
He hears birds sing sweeter in his trees, taller
and fuller, too, but not enough to screen out
the nameless faces next door that he calls
liars, thieves who’d steal his juicier fruit, kill
for his wetter rain and brighter sun. He keeps
a steely eye on them, mocks the too cheery
colors of their homes, too small and too close
to his own, painted white, with room to spare.
He curses the giggles of their children always
barefoot in the yard, chasing their yappy dogs.
He wishes them dead. Closes his blinds. Refuses
to let light from their windows pollute his eyes
with their lives. Denies their silhouettes dining
at the kitchen table, laughing in the living room,
the goodnight kisses through every bedroom.
Slouched in his couch, grumbling over the news
he dismisses as fake, he changes the channel
to an old cowboy Western. Amid the clamor
of gunshots he dozes off thinking of his dream
where he stakes a line between him and all
his neighbors, stabs the ground as he would
their chests. Forms a footing cast in blood-red
earth, bends steel bars as he would their bones
with his bare fists and buries them in concrete.
Mortar mixed thick with anger, each brick laid
heavy with revenge, he smiles as he finishes
the last course high enough to imagine them
more miserable and lonely than him alone
inside his wall, sitting on his greener lawn,
breathing his fresher air, under his bluer sky.