Literary Tattoos: Dorianne Laux Antilamentation

This belongs to A.M. Wells.

My tattoo is a line from the poem Antilamentation by Dorianne Laux. When I first read the poem I was struck immediately by how beautiful it was. To me it spoke of how we shape our lives and how we are in return shaped by the lives we live. It encourages us not to regret pain or mistakes because everything passes eventually and we emerge better prepared for the beauty. We know ourselves more truly.

You’ve traveled this far on the back of every mistake,
ridden in dark-eyed and morose but calm as a house
after the TV set has been pitched out the window.
Harmless as a broken ax. Emptied of expectation.
Relax. Don’t bother remembering any of it. Let’s stop here,
under the lit sign on the corner, and watch all the people walk by.

- Excerpt from Antilamentation by Dorianne Laux