hair today then/gone.

Here is the thing about hair.

When I was younger, it was a slightly different color. Not as red. A bit more…….(gasp) blonde. Some referred to it as dirty blond, but I’d yet to reach the true height of my experimental dirty phase (that has yet to end).

It was long and curly and healthy and luscious and.. and.. and.. pretty.

My grandmother always said:
If you ever cut it, give it to me.

She had thin hair and so does the rest of my family.

Luckily, I also obtained other qualities detached from genetics: dimples, small breasts and my homo-ness.

I’m sure if I searched deeper in my family, I’d find the culprit of my dimples
(actually, I remember my grandmother having a hint of them)

I’d find someone in my clan with small breasts
(thank you to whomever that may be…….though I wish they could be even smaller)

And I know of at least one queer wonder in the family, though I never met him.
(thank you, too)

As I grew, my relationship to my hair got tangled. I kept all my anger inside my curls. The length represented someone who I no longer wanted to be. Each time in my life when things were wrong, I took rusty (sometimes) scissors to hair and would cut.

One inch.
Two inches.
Three inches.

I went from long to extremely short in well under five minutes at the age of seventeen.

My mother called it: boy short.

I called it: freeing.

Then, I bleached it.
Dirty blond shifted to slightly orange.

This began my journey through root experimentation.

Pink. Purple. Blue. Black. Red. Red. Red.

Hello, Red.

I finally realized I was just in the wrong scalp.

I was born a redhead in a dirty blond’s body.

Each month, I must alter this. This becomes my least favorite time of the month, perhaps tied with the days in which my body reminds me of these eggs I’ve got and the babies I could (possibly) be birthing with each stain of my underwear.

Through each haircut, I’ve been the exact same person. Naturally, I have changed just a little: gotten a bit more mature and gained knowledge in areas I was not so aware of.

But I’ve always been a homo.
Funny……how hairstyle can sometimes change that.
Change the type of homo I am.

I’ve got all these knots in my hair.
Dreadlocks and tangles and today I cut two of them out.
Big ones.
Big monstrous ropes of red mixed with other shades of not-so-red.

When I went to work, I felt lighter. There was too much stuck inside those beasts of hair.

Then, I came home. Had a dance party in my bedroom. Grabbed my scissors and began to cut.

Slowly. Deliberately. Like a contemplative meditational chant.

I could use a touch up…’s hard to reach some places…..but I feel lighter than I have in over a year.

It’s just hair.
And I’m still just as queer as I was yesterday.
I’d like to keep cutting.
I could use some help.


to save a life build furniture

Several days ago, I saved a butterfly.

My body was elevated on bicycle named Heleanore. I used to listen to music with tiny black buds of sound bouncing against my eardrums. Then, I got into a slight accident. Now, I sing. I sing songs that are cooked inside my brain and come out of poems or become poems. I sing songs that I hear from radios that pass me by built into cars that pass me by. Without the plugged-in sounds, I hear everything around me.

And, I notice more.

Like this butterfly.

I rode right past it, then………..stopped. Parked bike against sidewalk and went toward it, struggling in the middle of the road. St Johns Place. Somewhere between home and where I came from.

This butterfly was brown. With spots. And of course, illuminating with symmetry. Its wings were almost as large as each of my palms. And its body. Shade of caramel, thick and furry.

There were no cars approaching, so at first, I sat with it. Or, knelt toward the gravel. Perhaps it was taking a break. I often do this when I’ve biked too long and my bones are out of breath. But it was more than just over-extended. There was injury within this insect.

My fingers carefully pinched its wing to lift it up. An elevation. Assisted flight.

Slowly, I brought this butterfly back to the ground, onto the sidewalk, where traffic was minimal and it could be seen.

This is happening more and more. Signs. Creatures. Breathing life silently in an effort to slow down. Look. Approach. Live beyond these lists I swim against and love away from the norm. When I was away, when I was conversing with the mountains, I fell in love. I found openness. I disengaged my chest and hips and jaw and listened to the sound of my body reconfiguring itself. I felt for the almost-invisible string connecting this body and mind.

Sometimes I think of myself as a building. Or a piece of furniture. Sometimes, I am a solo chair, wooden beneath with peeling upholstery. Crooked, with one leg shorter than another. Sometimes, I am a couch with far too many bodies placed on top of me and I cannot breathe and there is far more suffocation than rest happening. Sometimes I am a table or ottoman or sometimes I am just a sconce on a wall with peeling paper covering the spackle.

Somedays I am ok in this body. I dig it. I want to be nude and reveal its stunning imperfections.

Somedays I am confused by it. Don’t want to be penetrated or touched or imagined or labeled.

This tends to lead me toward the slash.

Perhaps that butterfly continued to struggle and I didn’t really save its life. Maybe it wanted to be in the middle of the road, tempting its fate to fast moving cars.

I biked away feeling the warmth of a good deed that somehow loses its power once it is spoken about.

That day I was a coffee table.

Today, I hope to build myself into a desk similar to my own……hand-painted and stained on wood that was just a scrap of something larger. A desk where poems are built. A desk where ideas are consumed and gathered.