The chrysanthemum inked
on the soft flesh of her forearm,
almost but not quite covered the scars
of the hieroglyphs etched with a
paring knife, each an invocation
of the endorphin god,
an oblation of pain to silence pain.
This symbol of life blooms between
please and thank you,
it’s petals lift and fall
on the rifts of damaged skin
as on a breeze.
© Dana Hughes 9.22.20