Poetry Journal

Issues / Volume 5 Issue 1 , July 2015


Norma-Jean, Naomi, Tammy and Grace

Johanna Emeney

                         You’re killing me
  with your bulkiness,
  your outmoded styles,
  the long, odious fringes that fall
  where eyebrows should be. No surprise
  wan, bashful women sink
  under the weight of your personalities
  when all they were seeking
  was something unobtrusive
  that made them feel mildly healthful,
  little changed, walking out
  into the world of observers again
  after so many months in hiding.
  Bad wigs,
                         with your timeless names,
  you serve as reminders of all the bad bald stories—
  the shower blocked with hanks of hair,
  that embarrassing, thick moult
  down the back of a coat two days unnoticed,
                         and once,
  a sleepless five-year-old
  found knotting pieces from her pigtails,
  cut with dangerous blades,
  onto a hairband for Mummy,
  whom she’d espied crying
  naked in the bath.