Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Sea Sharp and Their Cicada (The Tattooed Poets Project)

Our penultimate tattooed poet for April 2020 is Sea Sharp, who sent us this absolutely stunning tattoo:

Sea Sharp tells us:
"All of my tattoos relate to nature and include designs of bees, wildflowers, a snail, a bird, a butterfly, a fawn, a caterpillar and a whole lot of wheat. This chest tattoo portrays a cicada emerging from wheat.

This piece was done at the Gilded Cage (@gildedcagetattoostudio) in Brighton, UK by Paco (@pacocasero). I chose this design with the plan to add watercolor and ink splatter details later to better unite with my other tattoos, but I liked this version so much, I’ve just kept it as is.

In my second book of poetry, I often refer to my mother as a cicada bug, loud and brown and magical. The wheat represents Kansas, the place where she was born and resides to this day.

When I see this tattoo, I think of my mama."
Sea Sharp contributed this accomopanying poem, as well, which was first published in Black Cotton (Waterloo Press, 2019):

Mama Bug 
You see, when she was our age, mama was a cicada bug sing-sing-singin’ 
all sorts of mess and to this day nobody knows why she hang her brown 
skin on doorknobs the way she did actin’ like she could just leave behind 
a reasonable apology for lookin’ like that.

~ ~ ~

Sea Sharp is an award-winning poet and author of Black Cotton (Waterloo Press, 2019) and The Swagger of Dorothy Gale & Other Filthy Ways to Strut (Ice Cube Press, 2017). In the Arts Council England-funded theatrical show, Brother Insect, Sea Sharp was both playwright and performer.

On the stage or on the page, their work is known to be “emotively confrontational and politically charged”, unflinching with uncompromising critiques on how we continuously mistreat each other, ourselves and our planet.

To this day, Sea Sharp is still black and queer (but sometimes invisible).

Thanks to Sea Sharp for sharing their poem and tattoo with us here on Tattoosday's Tattooed Poets Project!

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