When she was eighteen I took her
to get her first –
a bald eagle-American flag concoction
that is now intermingled with the patchwork quilt
of ink that runs up and down her arms.
My name resides near her left wrist,
a skeleton dances up her spine
and kaleidoscopes explode around her ankles.
You cannot tattoo a scar, the skin rejects
the ink and color will not hold.
Soon they will slice
open my body and pull from me
to give to her. We will lie side by side,
tattooed skin flayed
and pinned back, bright butterfly sisters
on twin operating tables.
The railroad scars will track across our bellies,
the rainbow skin around them pulsing
with shared life.
Courtney LeBlanc is the author of chapbooks Siamese Sisters and All in the Family (Bottlecap Press). She is an MFA candidate at Queens University of Charlotte. Her poetry is published or forthcoming in Public Pool, Rising Phoenix Review, The Legendary, Germ Magazine, Quail Bell Magazine, Brain Mill Press, and others. She loves nail polish, wine, and tattoos. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, or find her on Facebook.
Beth Couture‘s work can be found in a number of journals and anthologies, including Gargoyle, Drunken Boat, The Southeast Review, Ragazine, and Thirty Under Thirty from Starcherone Books. Her novella, Women Born with Fur, was published by Jaded Ibis Press in 2014 as part of its Blue Bustard Novellas series. She graduates with her Master’s in Social Work at Bryn Mawr College in May, and she lives in West Philly with her husband and five cats.
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