Last week I had to have my cat Molly put down. She was 16, and she’d been my therapy cat for 11 years. I called all the mobile vets in town until I could find one who could come out right away. While we waited, I cradled Molly in my arms and listened to an especially lovely fan recording of “Rue’s Lullaby” from THE HUNGER GAMES. I decided, over the days to follow, to get the chorus from “Rue’s Lullaby” tattooed on my arm, where she’d last laid her head, as a memorial tattoo. If you don’t know it, here’s the text -
Here it’s safe, here it’s warm
Here the daisies guard you from every harm
Here your dreams are sweet and tomorrow brings them true
Here is the place where I love you.
I wound up going and getting it yesterday at The Austin Tattoo Co. by Cory.
It hurt a fuckload. The text goes far enough down that I felt vibrations in my elbow, and far enough up it that it’s maybe an inch and a half from my armpit… coincidentally on the very sensitive skin on the edges of an old scar. And you know all those otugh guys who get armbands that only go like 3/4 around? Turns out they’re not being utter lolariously cowardly. It HURTS LIKE BUGGERY. It was excruciatingly painful, wonderfully cathartically painful. And now the tattoo can carry some of the grief for me.
Sorry the photo’s a bit blurry, it’s a lot more legible in person.