Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Craig Kite and Wisdom (The Tattooed Poets Project)

Today's tattooed poet is Craig Kite, who sent along this photo:

Craig also offered up this poem:


When we were teenagers, my sister 
wore a Celtic cross around her neck. 
She said it meant wisdom
I sketched the cross onto my shoulder 
and flexed my arm in the mirror. 
The cross felt correct on my shoulder,
as if it were a birthmark that forgot to exist.  

I went to the tattoo parlor. I could have chosen any of the cheap tats available 
from reams of cartoonish mermaids and hearts with harmless arrows impaling Mom. 
I could have easily embroidered my flesh 
with barbed wire around my bicep or with some culturally appropriated concept 
of a “tribal” design. I could have gotten 
a Roswell alien head, or a blue scorpion. 

But I wanted wisdom. An old man 
scarred it into my 18 year old arm. 
When I came home, my mom liked it. 
I’m still kind of ok with it, I guess. 

~ ~ ~

Craig Kite is a poet, comedian, actor and musician based in New York City. He is founding director of Mad Gleam Press LLC for which he curates literary/performance art events and print publications. He is the poetry slam champion of Staten Island, which he represented at the National Poetry Slam and qualified for the Individual World Poetry Slam in 2018. He was nominated for a Pushcart Prize by Great Weather For MEDIA in 2016 and has been published by various literary presses including Fjords Review, Paris Lit Up, Great Weather For MEDIA, Three Rooms Press, The Opiate, Sensitive Skin, Those That This, NYSIA Press, Breadcrumbs, Autonomedia, Gamabzine, and Other Rooms Press. He has a background in journalism/human rights activism and led field operations in Iraq for Christian Peacemaker Teams in 2008-9. He has also worked in Turkey, Chiapas, Guatemala, New Orleans and Algonquin territory, Canada.

Thanks to Craig for sharing his tattoo and poem with us here on Tattoosday's Tattooed Poets Project!

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