by S.B. Corfman

My mother doesn’t remember 


a conversation about long hair, how 

it wasn’t allowed. The passive voice 


is intentional. It’s likely such a conversation 


never happened. Who, then, is to blame 

which small allele—other than a previous 


conversation about painted nails extrapolated 


to each nerve, which, you’re right 

isn’t the same thing at all? I haven’t spoken to Jeff 


in maybe twenty years, but Jeff did in fact grow 


out of a skirt, so he’s low hanging fruit 

for parents who play hide and seek 


each night but can’t believe their children 


hide in their minds, too,  

pomegranates thrown like tomatoes 


at the therapists supposedly carving 


crawlspaces in the back of that mind. 

How much a child—anyone—keeps 


from another. They’re not inventing it, 


I promise you. They’re not ready  

until they’re ready to talk, because  


each projection fades as it roots 


in the world. I wear pants and run 


up to the line that separates the shape 

of my body from the shape 


between us. I am skeptical 


even as I am still living. It turns out by the late twenties 

many people’s hair begins 


to thin. It never occurred to me. 


I had certain expectations and they are confronted 

by each biological pattern: 


DNA, epigenetics, hormones. 


Each system stays complex. 

There is no such thing as a spot fix.