Enter the Queen with her hair about her ears by Joseph Mills

In second grade, she cut her hair,

Photo credit: Christopher Wilson, with permission
“Goldened Crown” by Christopher Wilson, with permission

taking the blunt art class scissors

and squeezing off a thick lock

in the middle of her forehead.


Her mother grounded her,

saying, “We have to look at you,”

a statement her body

was not hers

to do with as she chose,

but a display for others.


In high school, she shaved her head

explaining that it cleared her vision.

We were impressed by her courage

and refusal to play the role,

but we also understood this too

was a performance and knew by then

how hair served as an advertisement,

conveying information about


         about wantonness

about madness

about who had begun

to become undone.



Enter the Queen with her hair about her ears Author PicA faculty member at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Joseph Mills holds an endowed chair, the Susan Burress Wall Distinguished Professorship in the Humanities. He has published four collections of poetry with Press 53.  His fifth collection, This Miraculous Turning, will be released in September 2014.  More information is available at www.josephrobertmills.com and he blogs regularly at www.josephrobertmills.blogspot.com.


Christopher Wilson is an award winning Chicago based amateur photographer whose works have been published in books and magazines. To view more of his work, visit him on Flickr.


Germ Magazine guest author
… is a contributing guest author for Germ, which means the following criteria (and then some) have been met: possessor of a fresh, original voice; creator of fresh, original content; genius storyteller; superlative speller; fantastic dancer; expert joke teller; handy with a toolbox; brilliant at parties; loves us as much as we love them.



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