Thursday, March 13, 2008
I've been thinking about getting a tattoo for the last few years. Two young teachers I worked with in "06 wanted to give me one for a good-bye gift. It just never happened. I moved to Portland, and they moved to different schools. It was going to be on my forearm. A rainbow trout; colorful but small and tasteful, I imagined.
It still may happen. Katie wants to get one too. Probably a Buddha...a tiny Buddha.
In thinking about the word and concept: tattoo...seems to me I already have a few. We all do, even our cars, trucks, bikes, but definitely our bodies. When I look at what were once very small freckles or birth marks on my arms, neck, back, I think, they've become a kind of tattoo. Scars are tattoos also. I see the mark made at 14 in wood shop. A slipped chisel leaves a tattoo. By my elbow is a spider webb fragment from a horse who wanted all my carrots and nudged me into a barbed wire fence because I resisted. Invisible is the tattoo I wear under my lip from Leonard. The violent 12 year old I met and worked with in a residential treatment center. His teeth form another one on the underside of my right bicep. He would always ask the next day, "What happened to you?" I'm sure, if he's still alive, he has many tattoos.
I figured a beautiful little rainbow on my forearm would honor all those who I've caught and released. Their color is so instantly vibrant, their eyes, large and aware. When I lose the ability to perceive the sacredness of a trout and all it takes to keep one alive, I'll be no good for anything, so at least I could take one with me this way. Seems a fitting tattoo, but until I "catch" the notion to get one, I'm content knowing I have a few that tell stories all along the way.