Poem III: Draft II (Contact)

I finished the second draft of my third poem for the week.  I still don’t have a title for it, but am thinking something to do with the sounds of clippers or lost in the sounds of clippers.


As boys we never
said I love you to
one another, but in the summer
haze beneath the sounds
of mom frying chicken
wrapped in the smells of green beans and bacon
which simmered through the windows
we cut each other’s hair.

The clippers electric buzz shook our hands
as one boy sat on a five gallon bait bucket
shirt off in the heat
while the other boy held down ears
hands against scalp, wrists
brushed skin, the back of the neck
tan fading along thin shoulders.

At times, we shaved mohawks and patterns
ran barefoot into the house to hide
the clippers, the footsteps and yells
the snap-swing of the screen door
always close, always near
a chaotic melody to the steady
rhythm of old men mowing yards.

Back on the concrete porch
white paint peeling, we always returned
apologies shrugged off, light
in our bodies and the breeze
as the hair fell beneath one boy’s touch
and we became light enough
to float away like the fluff of a cattail
coasting on water’s edge.

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