13 September 2004

napo #17 -- Brock-Broido

after "Self-Portrait with Her Hair on Fire" by Lucie Brock-Broido:

Self-Portrait with Cropped Head

Now, it is as close as the slo-mo of shuffling the tower-
Decks into fifty-two-card pick-up, consanguination.

I cower saying this, how on day five, I asked Mike
To cut my long hair back to the scalp line

But he couldn’t raze it, not far enough—
Not to stubble so I could annihilate my image

In a gesture of longed-for kinship, conflating
The dead, ash by ash, to a self too skinless for hair

Across a pacific ocean helplessly large,
The sight of carnage steaming ringed by kliegs.

Hair will go on growing as mornings begin
                                 In dread and the uncertainty,

While I grow less watchful or crave attention
                                 So misguided it is next to mercenary.

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