Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Indelible (Poem)


      for ddb

Needle nuzzles skin
but you give no blood.
This is about black work

and shading and the hues
with no holidays inside
the permanent main lines.

Not for you some flash.
Your designs are the stuff
of the dream catcher

the trickster god, shaman
healer, conferrer of light
connecting what's inside

to what's now out: immortal
red rows of Chinese characters
on muscle-hardened back.

The language of myth
fills out your life's own
philosophy that others

refuse to read as more
than a call to attention.
Strong shoulders bear

your raven's wings spread
wide, a hamsa cradled
below in a once-empty nest

of space, all five senses
defending against the evil
eye. A snake wraps the earth

dragon round your left
sleeve, tail tucked deep
into your armpit, the canvas

that is your body taking not
for the last time the mark
of the artist's indelible ink.

© 2013 Maureen E. Doallas

This month the theme at TweetSpeakPoetry and Every Day Poems is tattoos. My son, as some know, has a number of impressive tattoos to which I allude in this poem. I've used a few terms ("black work", "holidays", "flash") that are the jargon of the business.

For this months Tattoo Playlist, go here.


Glynn said...

Fine poem, Maureen. One fine poem.

scotthastiepoet said...

A very well sculpted piece Maureen - I will be back for more... With Bets Wishes Scott www.scotthastie.com

Brian Miller said...

body art is pretty cool, esp those that blend symbols to form a tight tapestry....

Manicddaily said...

So many ways in which one is marked and also makes their mark - super interesting poem - a real panoply of imagery - thanks much. k.

Anonymous said...

Poetry is so much more than reality as well as mythology as well as Poetry...

Anonymous said...

fine pen to ink... ~ M

Dorianna (paintswithwords.com said...

nice flow..tightly woven with great imagery..lovely pome

S. Etole said...

your words give new meaning ...

Beachanny said...

Your words elevated the artistry of the tattoos. They seem to come to life, take on added meaning and fly at me with a sense of freedom and beauty. What a magical poem!

Debra said...

You got it going on with the tattoo poem here! Bravo!