The Sword

On Friday I absently stuck a temporary tattoo on my arm. I got it from a sheet that came in a Neko Case LP – The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You. On Saturday, I walked into a local tattoo parlour and made it permanent.


I’ve written about Indelible Marks before.

I’ve been looking for a symbol. I’m yet to write it up, but three weeks ago I took my closest friends to the oak forest in Harcourt and held a goodbye ceremony for my twin sister, Penny. She died when we were thirteen months old. I was too young to remember the funeral. It was a beautiful day, and I feel like something within me has profoundly and forever changed.

I’d planned on getting an Alpha symbol, to remind me that I am the surviving twin, that I am strong, resilient. I just couldn’t see it. All of the placements felt slightly off. It wasn’t like the tree, that I imagined on my side every day for a year.

When I saw the sword on my arm, I knew. This tattoo is strength and passion and truth. It is a quest and a Needle and a cutter of knots. It is honesty and sharpness. It is intelligence, reason, fortitude. It is fierceness. It is forged, by hammers in hands.

The sword is to remind me that I have agency and personal power. It feels right. It feels perfect.

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