The Neighbors are Nudists

by Audrey Walls

The pine trees make sense now, how they line the backyard. Their dense needles, impassable black. Still, we strain to see any passing flash of skin when the wind comes through. Not that we’re voyeurs, but there’s something unnameable about it, about them. How the wife flicks away her cigarette ash like a hangnail, how the husband gloriously squats to pick up an errant leaf from the deck. We imagine them in a game of horseshoes, grilling steaks, pouring wine. Their suntanned bodies without lines or shame. We stalk them like whitetail down the property  line. We hold our breath and hope for revelation. Our bodies, clothed and unnaked, we pray for invisibility, for death.