short story

The Last Haircut

The Last Haircut
Photograph of the roots of a tree and rocks-taken by Lisa Tomey

Mounted on the back of the toilet seat, I intensely watched and listened as the gritty sounds of the razor cut through his whiskers and shaving cream, knowing not to speak while this most delicate operation took place, once completed, I was allowed to run my fingers through his damp mostly salty hair before he generously applied the tonic, magically turning more to pepper toned locks, combing his hair in place, to utter perfection, slapping on his spicy aftershave, his head was complete, intact with precision and thoughtful with words of wisdom, which I took in with every living breath.

Emotions ran high when I got the call that Daddy would be on his final days, having moved away, I was at a loss, but I knew that it was in my path to get to him, no matter what, with the company of my sister, we traveled to him, with no regrets.

My eyes saw him in the hospital bed and as I wondered if he would know who I was he smiled, you see Alzheimer’s had stolen some of his memory, but he gleefully told the nurse, when he saw us that “these are my daughters,” which conjured up my happy.

Our brother came in with clippers and asked me to give Daddy a haircut and it was an honor to be asked to do this final task, as Daddy always liked to keep his hair cut, as long as I remember, as I always fussed about how his wavy locks would be gone, but he always left some at the top, for his little girl, I liked to think, you know, just because it made me feel good.

Running my fingers through his thick mane, I closed my eyes in memory of all the times I did this as a child, going back in time before I was known, to the times when sand and salt were his life, an old Navy soul before he chose the blue sky of the Air Force, as I felt the dampness of his locks, I knew that no memories were clipped away as the roots of life run deep and even in the afterlife, who knows how much deeper than those roots run, so memory does not have an end or maybe even a beginning.

Youth was not lost when there is a man such as my father in your life, we had the chance to learn about cherishing life, having a sense of humor, running through adventures, taking risks, valuing the essence of less, and so much more; Giving Daddy his last haircut grounded me in the roots of that life and the awareness that while it may be a simple haircut to some, it was an acceptance that no matter who would even see this haircut, that he left this world in honor, knowing he had the look of a respectable man, as he should.


So, there you have it, my six sentence story for this week. I took the challenge of Denise and tried something  a little different, using an acrostic style, only I did it for a story vs poetry. How’d I do Denise?

Are you itching to tried your hand at Six Sentence Story? Go to this LINK and join us.

This weeks prompt: MEMORY

17 thoughts on “The Last Haircut”

  1. Two words: Yow!
    Very …not merely engaging but through the alchemy of identification, an awakening to life (for a brief time) a part of life many, if not most of us, have experienced.
    Very strong Six

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Tender sweet memories, Lisa. Definitely was a Navy man to the very end.

    I love this, “no memories were clipped away as the roots of life run deep and even in the afterlife, who knows how much deeper than those roots run, so memory does not have an end or maybe even a beginning.

    Thank you for sharing your acrostic style story.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I knew that dad was sick, but we still had a vacation planned. Daddy went to the hospital to get a blood transfusion and stayed overnight. Early next morning, I received a phone call that things did not go well and he had passed away


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