Sunday, March 15, 2015

Poetry Sunday


One of the fads that I've never understood was "body art," or what we used to call in a simpler and more direct time "tattoos." I don't think a woman enhances her beauty by using her body as a canvas or by collecting piercings* that, for many girls, make them look as if they'd been assimilated by the Borg. Eventually, those colorful tattoos fade and droop and become sad memories** of times gone by.

Tattoo
by Ted Kooser

What once was meant to be a statement—
a dripping dagger held in the fist
of a shuddering heart—is now just a bruise
on a bony old shoulder, the spot
where vanity once punched him hard
and the ache lingered on. He looks like
someone you had to reckon with,
strong as a stallion, fast and ornery,
but on this chilly morning, as he walks
between the tables at a yard sale
with the sleeves of his tight black T-shirt
rolled up to show us who he was,
he is only another old man, picking up
broken tools and putting them back,
his heart gone soft and blue with stories.


Skip the tattoos and the piercings, ladies. You really don't need them, and you'll thank me someday.

Have a good day. More thoughts tomorrow.

Bilbo

* With apologies to Dethany Dendrobia, my favorite cartoon goth, and Abby Scuitto, the wonderful goth lab queen from NCIS

**Check out the great Jimmy Buffett song "Permanent Reminder of a Temporary Feeling" for a musical version of this idea.

5 comments:

eViL pOp TaRt said...


Thanks for the advice, but you're preaching to the choir. I have no tattoos or piercings, and won't get any.

I heard about a little guy named Tattoo who was on television once.

Grand Crapaud said...

Tattoos don't even look good when new.

Mike said...

How about gauges? Where someone cut a one, two, or three inch hole somewhere and makes it permanent with a gauge. I'll send you pictures.

Chuck Bear said...

How about ass antlers?

allenwoodhaven said...

I'm all for personal choice, but I agree with you Bilbo. I know many people with tattoos, but have never really understood.