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  • Writer's pictureCaleb Parkin

NaPoWriMo 4.6: Model


Yup, this is me after my haircut. (NB – OBVIOUSLY IT’S NOT, from my ‘hair model’ Google, it’s apparently the alarmingly-pristine and very-possibly-computer-generated Jerome Kutscher…)

I went for ’round two’ of a ‘model’ haircut this afternoon.

This does not mean that I was then going to be taken photos of (as in the above illustration), but that I was just a human head, with hair on it (and quite a lot, thanks, at 32), meaning you get a cheap haircut from a (very pleasant) trainee.

While I’d love to claim this stems from a desire to nurture the next generation of Vidal Sassoon’s (or whoever the key coiffeurs of our times is/are) – it’s largely for a cheaper, yet rather better, haircut. (And it is a really good haircut, the details of which were slavishly attended to, for nearly two hours…)

When I say it was ’round two’, that’s because the last time I went in, they said my previous barber’s haircut was so poor, that they did some trimming, said to go away for a few weeks, then come back…Like a potter deciding to splat their clay back onto the river bank for a bit, before even attempting to make another vase. Or something.

It’s all very far from the Chloe Sevigny experience of ‘mo-delling’ (I’m trying to master the ‘Concerned Councellor’ and ‘Scratch’ poses for when I’m next there though…)

So then: a poem about the experience of being a ‘model’, in this fairly unglamorous way…

Model In the porcelain brace, I try to pretend
my neck usually bends this way, to be
a model model. Teacher and student
stand either side, each with a dryer
in my ear, like being dropped
from great height somewhere tropical. 
Tilting my head (‘funny-shaped’)
I’m rotated 360 degrees, like Mr Potato 
finally meeting the microwave. They stand 
mirrored above either shoulder, neither
angel nor devil to glassless me.  The shibboleths begin: of blending and wedging 
and not-wedging and un-wedging (and I’mback through a baggy centre-parted curtain
to the Nineties); of overdirecting my hair 
(like some B-Movie star); of scooping 
with the clippers (like my occipital ridge 
is raspberry ripple); of my hyperactive crown 
which must be a compliment (I am 
Errant Prince Van der Graaf!). While she snips and clips and scoops and tries and trips
it’s as though she is a carpenter, as though I am being made:
a clothes horse, whose ears have suddenly grown
fur – and a hammer, an anvil, a stirrup.

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