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.