Carol Potter The Requisite Bad Hair

The jig was up. We were in a room
kwith lots of windows. A rag-tag boy army

came down over the adjacent roof
kand crashed into the room. Like in the movies.

When the army boys came in,
kI was afraid they’d get me but I

disguised myself as one of the locals just
khanging out, poking through boxes

in the basement. Casual-like with no idea
khow I was going to get home from there.

I picked a photo out of one of the boxes
kand was sure it was a photo of my mother

with a boy child I had never seen.
kLately I had been wondering about a

brother. If there had been one, and where
khe might have gone. The rag-tag boys gathered

around me and we all tried to figure it out.
kThey were like Peter Pan’s boys. Or Robin

Hood’s, but they’d been up to no-good.
kOne picked up the photo of my mother and started

weeping. It turns out there’s a weep in
kjust about anybody, but it wasn’t his mother.

Just the idea of it started him up. I pretended
kI didn’t see anything. Tried on a few shirts

out of one of the boxes. Disguised myself
kas the lead singer in a grunge band none of us

had heard of. I had the clothes for it, some
kpiercings in the right places. The requisite

bad hair. They were a good audience.
kWhere they went to next I’m not sure,

but that boy soldier took the photo of my mother
kwith him when he left. I went on with the grunge

thing for a few years after but there comes a time
kin a person’s life when enough is enough.


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