Category Archives: Thomas Hayes


Thomas Hayes
I had never liked tattoos on women,
Associating them in my mind with strippers and sailors,
And loose living.
I met her in connection to my work,
She was young, no more than early thirties,
Fit and attractive,
And her arms were a swirl of colored ink.
At first I found it a bit off putting,
Until she, with great pride, showed me the tatts
That marked her three surgeries and said:
“I am a cancer survivor and I’m missing body parts.”

Her countenance was so genuine as she shared,
The only thing I could think of was that her tattoos
Truly were an act of rebellion….rebellion against death.
She had designed them all, and a friend had done the work.
This was her lifeline and something that made her feel normal,
And proof that she was still there.
In an instant I saw them as beautiful and wanted to know more
About each one.

©2012 This work is the property of the author.

%d bloggers like this: