I loved a recent blog post from Amanda Rudd, “A Permanent Relationship With Words:
Literary Tatoos.” She says she has always had a fascination with tatoos, but heeded her mother’s warning not to get any, along with a whole of of other taboos. I as a mom I have issued the same warnings….”You’ll be sorry someday….” But I have to agree with her that a literary tatoo holds some merit. So much more clever than the barbed wire that basketball players have.
Books that are important to me, leave an indelible mark on my thoughts, beliefs, and life. It seems to me that have a tattoo at all gives you a permanent connection to art. Having a literary tattoo gives you a permanent and explicit relationship with the words that have touched you, marked you. How can could I say no to that? So when it first occurred to me that one could get a tattoo based on a book, poem, etc., I was hooked.
If it’s a classic quote or title, it would never be passe or out of style. If short, it could be discreetly placed and not too painful. It would be flashed only in bookstores, libraries, book club meetings and other bookish locations where people could appreciate it. She suggests something related to Richard Adams’ Watership Down, a rabbit-related tat. Check out the site Contarywise to see a few photos and read the Guardian article, “Ten of the Best Tatoos in Literature.” I’m thinking the phrase “And So It Goes” from Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five.
And so it goes.