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Tuesday, 05 February 2013

The Story Behind My Haircut

By Arlene Corwin

I was trying to get used to death -
The dying starting long before.
I cut my hair!
It sounds inane,
But growing older, if you’re sharp
And see the symptoms,
You know you’ll want comfort. Vain
I am, but can’t afford the trouble
Of the upkeep to keep up attention
Or pretension,
Not to mention uselessness.
I’m trying to adapt to old-ness.
When I noticed coldness
And indifference
In the eyes that once were hot
Or envious,
The choice
Became as simple as a dimple,
And I’m pleased to say,
The days are easier this way.

[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Please read instructions for submitting.]

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post


Arlene - I loved your poem and can certainly relate to the feelings - but - and it's a big but - somedays you feel differently - and then the hair is gone!!!Perhaps that was the point of your poem - eventually - it all goes. Keep writing.

Ain't no picnic, this getting older and to say, consider the alternative, seems sort of sarcastic, even if true..The benefit of having had a pixie haircut most of the time since l962 when I was a Babe, so to speak - dob l941..I have let it grow, used to color it, stopped that, now that it is almost white, I like it a lot for some reason, but will stay with the pixie..It's cute, it's easy and somehow the white pixie makes me feel, well, like a pixie...We are still here for sure and I love your writing, keep doing it...

Simple as a dimple, I can see that simplicity is very beautiful and easy. We started out simple, how did we get so complex? Now I made it to 80, so the next goal is 81, etc, etc, but it is funny when you reach all those goals, poof, you are gone.

Arlene, I got a haircut yesterday, told the stylist to cut it all off, the shorter, the
better! I like your writing style.

I love your poem. I, too, have finally gone pixie, gradually over time, but somewhat reluctantly. My kids have urged me for years. Well, guess what!
Everyone calls it cute, and me, too. I don't think I've ever been called cute before!

My hair is so heavy, so thick and so straight it will NOT take a perm. Hairdressers complained every time I came in the door.

I swore from a young age that the very first time I saw a woman at the mall with inch long hair I would go home and shave my head and the day I did, in 1998 I did just that. I cut mine off to 1/2" long and have kept it there ever since with the cat clippers! LOL

I don't give a flying flip what other people think about my hair, but except for my sister who was blistering in her criticism, I get many compliments. It's very neat and takes very little care other than a daily shampoo and towel drying. :)

Oh, Arlene! I can so relate to the hair wars. For years I wore it medium-short and tried (and tried and tried) to grow it but basically always hated it and cut it off. Tears were sometimes involved.

Now that my hair is gray, I find that whenever you set foot in a hair salon, you get the short cut (the one I sometimes sarcastically call the Menopause Mushroom) no matter what else you might think you want.

Between fighting my hair 30 years ago and trying for something more hip than the Menopause Mushroom now, I realize this is a two-front battle that's not worth fighting--and never was.

My last random cut (last week) at a Great Clips in a mall did in fact render a hipper version of ultra short. Now if only I could reproduce it every six weeks ... probably won't get that lucky twice with a stylist.

For good or ill, hair grows back. At our age, we should play with hair when it's fun and stop when it's not. After all, we no longer have to worry about what the "other kids at school" will say!

Yes, my darling commentators, (Commentors? I live in Sweden - my English goes to pot sometimes) hair grows back! Never worry about taking the step. In fact, why should we worry about taking ANY step! It's our time!

Love, with much gratitude for your reactions.

Arlene, what great responses, love them all..you sure hit a note with us all..By the way, I always hated beauty parlors and that mileau..from a kid I had wild Irish hair, probably more Afro than Annie..I always did better with male haircutters and for last 35 years or so have gone to Barbers in their Barber Shop..they are best at short hair for sure, they charge a lot less and they listen when you say, little longer for the cold weather or can you make sure I don't have a bald spot, etc..I am serious, stop laughing..I also think they don't get many $l5 tips on a $l0 haircut, even in NYC..

To all you astonishing ladies who have reacted: as Jimmy Durante used to say "I've got a million of 'em"! I think I'll send in another hair poem. The response has overwhelmed me. Just wait. It'll come. This hair thing seems to be a delightful, moving, poignant, pregnant (let's see, what other adjectives can I think of?) metaphor. Wait till I start using words like pudenda! (Remember the hair there?)

Thanks Arlene, can't wait..this was my first laugh out loud moment today and it's l2:5lpm...It was like a night out for us all I think...get to work, can't wait for another night out, so to speak...

A pixie haircut for a pixiesh doll. Your poem on your haircut reminded me of ¨Hair today, gone tomorrow¨, The Hair and the Tortoise, Hair´s mud in your eye and the agreement cheer of British Parliament, Hair! Hair!
Not a bad musical of the sixties, either. Keep up your great writing and remember that death is only the beginning. It´s when we get to that Great Concert in the sky that we really start to live. Love you and Kent immensely always, Tina and Ed

I forgot to say, I haven't heard the words Pixie Cut since 1966 or so! My short hair is definitely not 'pixie'. No pixie I! More 'tough broad from Brooklyn' cut which [hair] I keep chopping off every time I wash it and something sticks out.

I'm so grateful for all your charming, reinforcing, funny-back-to-me selves.

Dear Arlene: I enjoyed your poem, interesting to read all reactions, funny and true. Great to see how you motivate us.
love, queta fra Mexico City.

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