This is a very short story of
the tattoo I never got
of Elvis, and
the head of Jesus,
crowned with thorns, blood dripping
into the stripes of an American flag
or was it Jesus, crown of thorns and blood dripping into
the American flag,
then Elvis?

Yes, that was the design I had in mind.

It was in reaction to the mother of
my son's first real girlfriend
who said if I got a tattoo, she would,
so both of our minor teenagers
could get them.
Made little sense to me plus
I had already been hoodwinked
into adopting two kittens
by these young lovers.

I asked the other mother what she would get;
she said a small butterfly on her shoulder.
That's when I came up with my idea
to, as my grandmother would say,
"put the kibosh on that".
I should explain at this point
the mother was from Georgia,
and perhaps that was why
my tattoo, all across my back,
was more than she could handle.

She said the cats reminded her of a painting
a silhouette of a cat looking out a window

It was an image she could relate to,
being fond of soaking up the yellow light of the afternoon
curled up on the window sill

When I found the painting it made her smile;
made me wonder how it would look on her skin

a single black cat, occupying the center of her back
looking away from my eyes,
dreaming of warm sunsets

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