Hair Loss by: Adeline Oka

Why does my hair shed?

Maybe it’s drawn by the square tiles of my bathroom floor- I caught a strand of it
In the throes of passion, its slinky curve
Upon the cold linoleum, pressed against
The hard surface, hot air above
Blowing
From my ConAir Dry’N’Straight, while
That single hair lay writhing below.

Maybe it was a dramatic suicide- reported by the paparazzi of my three-fold
Mirror, one dove root-first from a 5’4’’ roof,
Plummeting into the murky waters, and now its limp,
Lifeless body is lost in the violent
Current, spiraling
Downwards, towards the suctioning in
The center of the basin, until finally it vanishes into
the abyss.

Maybe it was a natural disaster- a round hairbrush cyclone, sweeps
Over the hairscape, blindly drawing in
Every strand in sight, brutally uprooting peaceful
Pieces of hair, spitting back out
Flakes of scalp, and leaving mangled bodies knotted
Together, lying in the gutter crevices
Between the spikes of the brush.

Maybe it was a failed pilgrimage- a quest for spiritual freedom:
A few of them sought a purification, sought to be purged
Of the oppressive oils that smothered
Them, desperate to release
Themselves from hold of evil: gels, pomades,
Hairsprays, longing to strip off
All the baggage, the buildup from shampoos
And conditioners: the world’s prescribed means
To the cleansing of impurities, but
Alas! They too have failed and now weak
Souls clinging to the warmth of my pink palms, still in search of
Righteousness.

And now here I sit in a cemetery of fallen hairs;
Though some of its desperate brothers and sisters have perished into the deep watersm
Others continue to seek a noble path towards enlightenment
I cannot save them all;

Can I save any?