She cut his hair weekly
in the garden sun
or at the kitchen table
with the radio on.
It hardly needed to be done.
He had little hair to speak of,
more a grey grass skirt semi-
circling the waist of an egg.
But the ritual was ingrown
and somehow the more redundant
the cut, the more precious the touch.
She took her time, for time they had.
He’d close his eyes as her hands
softly fussed, angling his head,
brushing his ears and cheeks,
snicking the iron millimetres
He didn’t say much, and if she spoke
it was in a low tone, that he could feel yet,
vibrating through her frame
as her big warm body
leant into his.
He loved most the finishing touch
of electric clippers tickling his neck
droning about his ears
like a little didgeridoo.
Geoff Forrester is a poet and performer, better known as Tug Dumbly. In 2019 he was shortlisted for the Newcastle Poetry Prize, and longlisted (for the second time) for the Vice Chancellor’s Poetry Prize. His first poetry collection, Son Songs, was published by Flying Islands Books in 2018.