I never did care for neighbors; always wantin’ to burrah a cuppa sugar, or an egg, your hammer, or conversation. The old neighbors were significantly better than the new ones, though they’ve ne’er burrahed a thing from me. The old neighbors took care of their yard, always plantin grass seeds, trimmin’ their hedges, weedin’ and plantin’, plantin’ and weedin’. In fact, it was odd if’n you didn’t see at least one of them with their pants soiled about the knees. Ayup. It was even more suspicious when they jus’ up and sold the house jus’ before the frost came ‘round last winter.
I knew the new neighbors would be trouble from the git go. It was jus’ somethin’ ‘bout the way they drove up in that flashy red pickup, what with all the bells and whistles, lookin’ as though it had ne’er seen dirt, jus’ all purty and shiny like, the wheels all silvery and flashin’ in the sun. Just plain blindin’ if’n you asked me. Ain’t no sense to be showin’ off like that in a li’l ol’ place like this. Jus’ ain’t no sense to it a’tall.
So, winter turned to spring, spring to summer, and I’ll be damned if it ain’t fall again. Fall means leaves, and leaves I jus’ cain’t do. This is the sixth day in a row I been out rakin’ up these leaves. I ain’t seen hide nor hair of them though out rakin’ their leaves. They jus’ sittin’ all over their lawn, red splotches on gold flecks, on more red. Red like blood. I’ve already done gone and raked up their leaves what keep blowin’ over in my yard. Cain’t seem to keep ‘em out. I’lls just hafta put a note on their door ax’n ‘em to keep up with their leaves. T’ain’t nothin’ else what I could do.
Damn neighbors. I know they saw it. I know it. And me, out here wipin’ the sweat off’n my brow, rakin’ these leaves, lookin’ at their yard full of ‘em. Watchin’ the wind blow ‘em right back into my yard where I jus’ raked. The way the wind dances with ‘em jus’ sets my blood to boilin’. It’s obscene is what it is. There’s jus’ no accountin’ for it. None a’tall.
Damn neighbors, cain’t follow the simplest instructions. Damn leaves. Blood red. Leaves. Ever’where.
Damn neighbors. Damn leaves. Damn red leaves. Blood. Boilin’. Leaves like blood ever’where. Boilin’ blood.
Damn leaves. Cain’t see the grass for the leaves anymore. Nothin’ but red, ever’where. Red like blood. Damn neighbors. Damn red.
Damn blood. Damn tree.
Chop. Chop. Slam. Timber! Ha. That’ll take care of your damn leaf problem and your damn red truck, too. Ayup. Let’s see the wind dance with your leaves now. Damn tree. Let’s see you clean them leaves up now, damn neighbors. Damn blood. Boilin’ red.
Smash. Damn neighbors. Squish. Oh now you git that fear in your eyes? I ax’d you nicely to Rake. Smack. Your. Smash. Damn. Rip. Leaves. Slash. I even wrote it up all nice an’ neat on that purty stationary my wife used to use. She shore did like that red paper. Boilin’ red. Splunk. T’weren’t a difficult request. All’s you needed was a rake. Squarsh. Now look it what you made me go ‘n do! Slam. All’s ya had to do was ax’d to burrah the damn rake. Scratch. Look it that. Blood on your floor. Red as them leaves. Don’tcha wish you’d a listened to the nice friendly note now? Scratch. Scritch. Damn. Now I gotta rake ‘em up for ya. Creak. I’m gonna burrah your freezer, okay? Slide. Oof. Thud. Slide. Thunk. Oosh. Thud. Slap. Don’t worry. Slam. Your yard’ll be jus’ fine. Once them leaves are gone, and the frost done moved on, your flowers will be pushin’ right on up through the ground in no time. No time a’tall. All’s you need is a spade. Ayup. All’s you need is a spade.