The Pull

Baby wisps adorn the temples of a crooked hairline

Tiny and soft with promises of newness,

Eleven-eleven eyelash wishes

For the smooth tresses of single-digit birthday pictures

Before the days of thinned-out ponytails and

Hidden bald patches underneath cheap perms


The wisps will one day become unruly, jagged strands

Pulled out and scattered among books and magazines while watching TV

Coffee tables, couches, subway cars, office keyboards

Each strand precisely curated and expertly hand-plucked

Fated to an afterlife of dust, Dorito crumbs, and lost bobby pins

Debris—but make it craft!


This tricky craft is a finely-honed art,

Decades have been devoted to

Plucking the kinky coils from the scalp

It’s not a masterpiece;

Chasing that elusive, perfect head

Is a lifelong pursuit