Penance Tattoo

Penance Tattoo
The story was that as she came out of the twilight, heart seemingly back to its metronome synchronicity, she felt led to just give in. Enjoy the ride. 

The meerkat, an angel of sorts shook his head lightly. She knew it was not her time. Yet. 

A Mom tribute tattoo…

Politically Correct

You are beautiful.


You set standards.

No one is sure why. 

Not anymore.

Rumor has it darkness is

Making You Great Again. 

Erasing history and progress.

There is work to be done.

Society needs reform.

The poisoners need less regulation.  

More profit. 

Bend close to the breaking point. 

Trial run everything.

Float balloons.

Stealth your Colonialism. 

It IS history after all.

Maintain your persona. 

At all times.


Because your way works so well. 



Lie about the lies.

Act confused- or naive.

Self righteous – or entitled.
Whatever works. 
Count the money.
Split it with the other one percent. (Disable recording of drone footage from the places with brown people, strange names with varying numbers of consonants or a religion Jesus didn’t vet.)

It’s all Monopoly anyway.

You think it’s 3D chess. 

Still you play checkers.

You NEED to be made great.

Not again. 

Indigenous and those forced to build your 

wealth and privilege NEED restoration. 



Humans give that.

Countries, kings or corporations…?

Same old gold, reputation and standing.

Convert the world to your way.

It works so well, a lying,  

puppet- clown is needed to repair the damage.

To sell a different snake oil.

So,  What is really broken? 

Waiting for C

Pinpoint eyes

Hum like E.M.P. 

She stares into me

While seeking answers

We both already know

And neither really wants to.
She’d much rather document

The pain she knows I’m in for.

She’s seen it all before.
She will get her chance.
Up to a point,

These things take time.


I collect stories of cold darkness

Continuously assured by those unknowing robins egg blue sky was optical illusion.

Not when replay swept me into your wanting, needful soul.

Your body hollow from desire – full of promise and escape. 


Tried and true. Tired –

A convenient truth

Neglectful of self doubt, fueled by the hands of time.

time: the natural massage of change

time: a gift of longing, regretful years.

Those truly knowing, know truly- All that jazz.

Love is a vengeful spirit.                             Collecting and creating                                   Stories.

Tales of concrete footed -Wandering poets, Writing on napkins -And notebooks.                  The backs of eyelids in sleep.

Silky delicate ink-Bold black lines.                        In robins egg blue skies.                                        Pastel, running – from the rain.

Your stories, penned-Under moonlight as you ran with fear
-                                                           Ran from repetition, regret, and historically unimaginable, non-existant world.

The one world the poet believes in.             Perhaps he should write fairytales instead.

I fell in love with your stories                                   I struggled to live -The beginning of my final chapter.

Feet free from concrete…

I hold unfinished stories

In my hands

Beautiful promise -Keeps me balanced               For now,                                                                   Their weight increases daily.

My feet grow heavy.




Tom Stone Image

Credit TomStone Photography -Stories










’55, ’56, ’57

Striking blue, wise eyes
Entered the room with a bang.
Radiating midwestern farming grace.

An octagenarian debating.
A tattoo. His first.
Body mods desired since the last century.

A football.
American oval, not International round.
Pigskin body mod from last century.
(in the old days, apprentice tattooists practiced their craft…on pigskin)

’55, ’56, ’57
Emblazoned – permanently. To remember
Glory days fading from view.
(Hurry. Once it starts it may be too late)

Fading from view in an aging minds eye.
So many clouded already, then gone.
Lost. Already.

I watched his eyes. He never tipped off what the story was.
I knew he was having a hard time making the leap.
Accepting the fact that permanence isn’t always so.
Not in the mind.

A “bucket list” thing, fear driven.
A last grab at what happenned.

He was having a hard time making the leap
To his thoughts and to his skin.
His wife was next door at the Thrift Store.

Those blue eyes said it wasn’t the permanence of the act.
It was that the moment from years ago now must be seized, documented or lost.

Out of necessity.

One hundred and fifty dollars.
“Ill be back. Meet my wife, have a bite, and then … I’ll probably be back.” He stuttered the last “probably”.

I know exactly how he feels. Assuming I remembered correctly.

I didn’t stutter.