Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Tattooed Poets Project: Tammy Nuzzo-Morgan

In the first post of this year's Tattooed Poets Project (here), Vicki Iorio described watching today's tattooed poet, Tammy Nuzzo-Morgan, recite verse while being tattooed. Here is that tattoo, along with some others:

Photograph by Mark Wells
The word "poet" in the center of the back is self-explanatory and was inked by Syxx, at Wyld Chyld Tattoo Studio. Above that is the name "Joey," who is Tammy's husband. That was done by an artist named Kenny at a shop called Z Connection. The piece on the right is a rose, with the names of Tammy's three children and their birth dates, inked by Bob at Tattoo Lou's on Long Island. Dave at Tattoo Lou's also did the memorial cross for Tammy's son Mike, who was killed in 1995. Tammy also has this tattoo on her foot:

That cat paw is for Tammy's cat, Maude, who passed away last October 10, and was done by Jimmy at Wyld Chyld.

Tammy also shared some of her poetry:


I am not the coca cola girl,
the Cheez-It tidbit waiting for you to taste,
the limo ride to the Yankee’s game,
the wrangler jeans chick baking in the New Mexico sun,
and I never was or will be Sunday mornings in spring.

I am the time-ticking-away second hand,
the flat tire on the side of the road,
the too high door jam,
the worn-out tooth brush,
the 59 cents in the ashtray,
the Lunch Poems dog-eared book,
and the who never forgets to tell the truth.

~ ~ ~


I remember when you spoon-fed me ice-cream as we lay in bed on that rainy afternoon
and the way your fingers tasted and your neck had a hint of sweat and I closed my eyes
and you drove away the dark and I called your name in a low, soft moan.

I remember when you spooned sugar into your morning tea on that sunny Tuesday

and I watched you drink as if you were a foreign film I could not understand
and your smile told me my poetry made you hunger for more than a nine-to-five life.

I remember when you spooned dirt into the flower pot and filled it with mums for me

and I was peeking out the window seeing you bent down working away humming
and I decided then that I was not who I wanted to be without you in my days and nights

And I remember how after you left I packed away all the silverware, including those

spoons and I gave the box to the Salvation Army, hoping for some salvation of my own
and I drove away from our town knowing I would never see another sunset like you.

~ ~ ~

Tammy Nuzzo-Morgan is a very busy woman. She was appointed Suffolk County Poet Laureate for 2009 – 2011. She is founder and president of The North Sea Poetry Scene, Inc. and The North Sea Poetry Scene Press. She was nominated for Pulitzer Prize in 2006 for her poetry book, Let Me Tell You Something. She is
listed in Poets & Writers, has penned 4 chapbooks, is Poet-in-Residence at
Southampton Historical Museum, an adjunct Professor at Briarcliffe College, the editor of the Long Island Sounds Anthology. She hosts TNSPS’s Arts Forum TV Show on Channel 20 on Cablevision in Riverhead, N.Y. and serves as the Lead Poetry Jurist for the East End Arts Council, Riverhead, N.Y.

Currently, Tammy is creating an archival/arts center ( for Long Island poetry that will be a gathering place for poets. She is also currently working toward an M.F.A. at Southampton Stony Brook University.

Thanks to Tammy for sharing her work, both written and tattooed, here on Tattoosday!

This entry is ©2011 Tattoosday. The poem is reprinted here with the permission of the author.

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Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Tammy! I enjoyed reading your poems. way to go.



Anonymous said...

plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose

J. Barrett Wolf said...

Nice to see this. Poets with ink should be cited in this way -Sharing both both your body and mind in an artistic fashion.

Anonymous said...

very nice pix and poems,tammy!


Anonymous said...

The emotion in each poem you write makes as indelible a mark on the reader's heart as a tattoo.

Uncle McCheever said...

Very Interesting but PAINFUL. I was always afraid of Needles as a kid so that precludes me from ever 'tatting" on myself!Anyway Mozeltov to you Tam!

Deborah said...

Great poems and tats. All hail our esteemed Laureate!

Deb xx

Judy said...

I am Tammy's oldest sister Judy. Tammy took me to get my first tat in 1988. I was in New York. It is a rose with a stem, and has my three children's names with the year they were born. Thank you Tammy even though you did call me a chicken. Since then I have an Indian war shield on my right ankle and a dream catcher on my left shoulder. I am going to get one more so stay tune for where and what it will be. Lots of love to my little sister.

Phil Reinstein said...

Tammy's poetry is real, like fresh ink on cool skin. I feel I want to stop in and stay a while as I am beckoned in to a world of feeling how it really is. tattoos please.

Cristina Lopez-O'Keeffe said...

Tammy has made a positive mark on the poetry world in so many incredible ways. This is just another example of that. Great stuff, lady!

Denise Kenny said...

Tammy I just want to tell you that you are am amazing woman and an inspiration to me. I have known you for a long time and I have never known a more caring, giving, loving person than you my friend. You have come a long way and I am truley blessed to have had you in my life. You will always be in my heart forever. I Love you Tammy.