At first it was a little wave
that stood up on the crest of her skull
but which finally spiraled over
like a breaking wave
down toward the ‘v’ of her forehead hair line.

Eventually, it curved all the way around her square head
and then after that became a long strand down the back.

And yet somehow when you look in her
little staring googly eyes you remember
again that little Mohawk lock
standing up on top her tiny bare head.

She assumes a front-leaning rest position
and there’s that defiant curl cutting the air
and the next thing you know she’s rolling over
and that little lock of hair crawls away.

Every time you see her eyes peering
into yours there’s this spiral halo up above.


James Van Looy has been a fixture in Boston’s poetry venues since the 1970s. He is a member of Cosmic Spelunker Theater and has run poetry workshops for Boston area homeless people at Pine Street Inn and St. Francis House since 1992. Van Looy leads the Labyrinth Creative Movement Workshop, which his Labyrinth titled poems are based on. His work appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.