Pump the Koken's lever, Robert.
You raise my station in the life
of Jimmy's Barber Shop
I'm talking while you trim my top.
Medium please and tapered.
Because you speak so little of yourself,
or about this favored place...
I'd like to recall, in rambling,
my own long-gone grand-
pop! went four of my grandfather's fingers.
zing! ripped the tablesaw blade, half-
taking poor "PB's" misplaced digits.
Dr. PB Welch made his own office furniture;
you know, of Spanish Mission style,
in keeping with Coral Gables' original theme.
That's why PB quit his clinic next door
to Jimmy's; Jimmy's -- from then to now
the only shop in the Gables good for chops.
Jimmy's Barber Shop
a haircut or shave and never a bleed
Say, now that I think this out,
I'm quite sure that my dad's Pappy sat here
in this 1914 barbers' chair.
Funny, to realize just now, PB gained his own degree
in the same year this perch was created:
University of Ill., '14.
I never met that man, understand, PB died six decades ago.
I like this a lot, that he conversed with Jimmy,
from this very chair.
You are good for me, Robert.
You listen well and reply softly
for the little of interest I say
I'm feeling family in my gut;
through my rump, like Paul Brown Welch.
Another pump of the handle, Robert?
What's that, Robert -- ghosts?
Yes, PB's still here.
You and Jimmy are our hosts.
Unlike myself you don't talk so much;
friend Robert, you listen and nod
and say "That's nice" a lot.
hair never stops growing
Robert and Jimmy have been here for a while;
for seventy five years, in fact. And into the future
at PB's shop, at my shop, on this spot,
All Come to The City Beautiful's most venerable place
for meeting friends, for refinding pasts
in this present and temporary day.
About that gentleman you just had in this chair;
that fellow before me- with the thick head of hair.
Say, like you did for that kid, if you please,
yes, I'd really enjoy a lollipop and
for all of this, I thank you.
Robert Reid Welch