It Wasn’t a Black Rose Tattoo on Her Thigh

Outside. Wave ringlets spread across
the surface of a city pond in the rain.

It’s so hard to tell exactly when
night falls in this weather.

Inked-in echo drawings spill on the fabric
that covers her skin. Inside. Symbolism

has no place on pajama bottoms.
With or without feet. Even ones worn

to school. Nomadic symbols travel through covered bridges to the beat of thunder

breaking overnight. They get soaked,
bleed into the soil, provide nutrients

for a roadside rain garden where petals only look black, only feel like velvet.

And it’s enough to tell another story
about unrequited love.

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