Thursday, March 31, 2016

First Haircut by CL Bledsoe

Mom loved my long, blond locks. Dad
thought I looked like a girl. He waited

as long as he could stand, until the tresses
reached my shoulders, snatched

me up and took me to the barber shop
downtown. A man I didn’t know helped 

me up onto the booster on his chair
with a smile. When I cried because Mom

had cried, he tried to convince Dad
it was okay to wait. But Dad

insisted, and I left looking like a boy.
It wasn’t long after that my hair darkened 

from Mom’s blond to Dad’s raven
black stain.

CL Bledsoe is the author of a dozen books, most recently the poetry collection Riceland and the novel Man of Clay. He lives in northern Virginia with his daughter.

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