when i was in germany, i fought constantly with my beard trimmer. something about all that foreign electrical current got inside of the little thing, juiced it up in odd ways. now that the device had seen the larger world, felt a part of larger electrical grids with strange new ways of connecting, well… let’s just say a low-rent apartment in southwest fort worth sounded about as appealing as a dumpster bin behind an airport.
i did not know, packing my bags, exactly how far my beard-trimmer would go. i knew things weren’t working out between us. we weren’t really connecting daily, or even weekly. i disappeared for weeks at a time, recklessly allowing my facial hair to grow in weird ways. once, i even cheated with a pair of scissors in a hostel bathroom in berlin. i didn’t tell my beard-trimmer about it, but when i returned to the trimmer, it just seemed to… know.
when i got on that plane to fly on home, i did not know if my beard trimmer would come with me. i packed it in my luggage. i wished it a safe trip.
in the airport, i pressed my hand against the glass, watching the luggage loading. i wondered if my beard trimmer would be there when i landed.
alas, when i returned home to the states, i unpacked and there was no beard trimmer. some foreign man swooped out of the wings unknown to me, and whisked my bird trimmer to a better life in some European city where vain men must trim their beards with a daily precision in time to the giant clocks outside of every window.
and i think of my beard trimmer when my beard becomes too scruffy. i mourn the loss of it. when my beard grows too scruffy, i scrape the hairs away with the jagged edge of chipped black obsidian – black like my mourning heart. (since chipped obsidian is actually quite difficult to find these days, i substitute the obsidian for a straight-edge razor and some shaving cream. not quite as black, or as painful, but inside i DON’T USE AFTERSHAVE! I let my face burn for hours in the pain of lost beard trimmers!)
thus, is my face naked of hair.
i shall grow the beard back again, for i do not recognize myself in the mirror without it. yet, i will still mourn my lost beard trimmer every couple months. i will drag knives across my skin and wish things could have worked out better between the trimmer and me.
i hope it has found all the joy it could not wherever it is, whomever it is trimming.
vague good wishes are all that are left, really, in every painful heartbreak.