Tattoos for Mother's Day
An collection of Jean Sprackland's early work.
Sprawled under the hedge he snaps
the thin necks of deadnettle,
pinches the white sac, squirts
nectar into my mouth.
A small sweet promise on the tongue.
I run home in the heat. The smell
of melting tar, a stickiness underfoot.
The house whirrs and stutters with the machine.
She urges a small red dress to the needle.
She stops, examines me, stretches
to tug a snag of stickybud from my hair.
Be a good girl. She takes up the cloth
and snaps the thread on her teeth. Won’t you?