2011-08-29T22:11:18-07:00August 29th, 2011|Musings on life|

The tattoo

The tattoo crawls up her neck
eagle talons clutching
at her throat.

I blurt out:
Where is the rest of it?

She is making my coffee
the line-up behind me is long
I regret the question
I am too earnest
for her intensity
I am wearing
too much

But her voice is gentle
shy even
as my milk steams
she lifts her shirt a little
looking away
inky feathers

The female eagle is stronger
she says quietly.

She is thin
I notice as she holds her shirt
that her hands

I remember the carving of Garuda
we saw in India
the deity with the eagle’s beak
so massive
they say he could block the sun.

She hands me my latte
and in the foam
are two intractable eyes
and that austere scowl
of a beak
a face
a reminder
to fear.

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