Saturday, April 13, 2019

Joshua Marie Wilkinson on the Tattooed Poets Project

Today's tattooed poet is Joshua Marie Wilkinson, who sent us this photo:

He explained:

My tattoo (on the left) depicts a Kewpie doll in the mouth of a coyote, done by Bugsy (@bugsy_pageau) at Machine Age Tattoo in Tucson. I wanted to get a ridiculous heavy metal piece after I was awarded tenure at the University of Arizona, where I used to work. It's an ode to one Bugsy did of a Kewpie in the mouth of an evil toad, to the brutality of the Sonoran Desert, and to my friend Paul Fattaruso's excellent novel Travel in the Mouth of the Wolf.

Joshua also shared the following poem:

By Which I Meant

                                                                                 I know my lure is useless.
                                                                                                          —Jay Wright

Double-eyed, thrown through
history’s vacuum shutter.

And into the thresher, splitting
the pond’s reflection
of an imagined dive
as we stand, moon-soaked,
on the dock over the water tonight.

Is it raining? By which I mean
Are we hiding from something out here?

How plainly I see in hindsight that
I was forced to play dead. I stopped
the cold speech from reverberating
in my throat.

It’s a bad ocean out there. Lapping at our
prattle. You thought that was laughter?
That was not laughter. It was a lure
in the light, a slowed diffusion
in the terrorized air.

~ ~ ~

Joshua Marie Wilkinson is a writer living in Seattle.

Thanks to Joshua for sharing his cool tattoo and poem with us here on the Tattooed Poets Project on Tattoosday!

This entry is ©2019 Tattoosday. The poem and tattoo are reprinted with the poet's permission.

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