The Tattooed Poets Project: Michael Henry Lee

    Today's tattoo was submitted by Michael Henry Lee:

    Photo courtesy of Michael Henry Lee
    There's a lot going on here, so let's let Michael explain:

    "The work pictured began about 36 years ago in Kansas City, Mo. I only remember the artist's name as John. The piece started with the stylized exotic bird's head that John took credit for as his own. A few years later I found the same piece on the back of a Mountain album cover. Imagine. Fast forward a couple of decades to a fantastic shop [Soul Expressions Tattoo Studio] in Temecula Ca. and an artist named Dan Adair. The sun and Conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah were added there. The sun was David's design and the Lion comes from the Ethiopian flag borrowed from a Bob Marley album. The conceptual idea was mine and is meant to be symbolic of the Christian trinity: Father (as the sun), the Son (as the Conquering Lion) and our old buddy the bird (as the holy spirit). The seven is symbolic of the biblical number of completion and is repeated three times. The piece was just retouched and colored last year in Saint Augustine, Florida, by Tattoo Mike from Tattoo Garden."
    Michael also offered up several short poems, including some haiku:

    "tattoo impressions"
        van goes home
    stepping out in a starry night    

    (first appeared in graffiti kolkata Aug 2010)


    tattoo garden
     the blush returns
     to mother's rose


    What Love’s Got to do with It

    It was rumored of late
    that Love;
    is suffering from a stolen identity

    Eros has hacked into Agape
    like the evil twin exchanged at birth;
         Ying for Yang
               The Pauper for the Prince
                        Cain for Abel

    The imposter has taken control
    using seduction and guile
    to manipulate the hearts and minds
    of whoever might be deceived

    Love’s calling all investors
    Setting the record straight
    Distancing itself from a nefarious sibling

    Love does not
              sell cars, clothes, food, or personal hygiene products
    Love knows
              the grass isn’t greener in the next field,
              and besides brown is highly underrated anyway
    Love always makes deposits
              but not withdrawals
    Love is patient as water
              smoothing stone          
    Love knows the worst
              but hopes for the best
    Love bites its tongue and swallows its pride
    Love looks at the heart
              not: boobs, biceps, or bank accounts
    Love is the first one into a burning building
              an the last one off a sinking ship
    Love builds
                      and  Nations 
    Love is an invisible necessity
             like  time, gravity, and oxygen

    Love is beyond time and space



                        a promise
                one poured out for all 
                         that they

    "What Love's Got to do with It" first appeared in Heart Pour The Love Book from Poet Plant Press, 2011


    Michael Henry Lee is a husband, father and grandfather. He and his wife of 30 years reside in St. Augustine, Florida; the nation’s oldest city, along with two cats, and numerous bonsai trees.

    Michael is a member of Ancient City Poets and the Haiku Society of America. The last Sunday of every month generally finds him at the Heart Pour Matinee; an open mic poetry reading that features seasoned artists as well as new talents. 

    Mr. Lee serves as contributing co-editor for Poet Plant Press, and is a frequent contributor to Haiku News, and Haiku Ramblings. His work has appeared in Berry Blue Haiku, and Graffiti Kolkata He was voted among the favorites in the 2009 Alibi Weekly annual haiku contest, and was awarded third place prize in the Yukei Teikei Annual Tokutomi Haiku Contest for 2010.

    Mr. Lee is quoted as saying “my objective is to express the good news and mystery of life in every breath, through the simplicity of haiku”.

    Thanks to Michael Henry Lee for sharing his tattoo and his work with us here on Tattoosday!

    This entry is ©2011 Tattoosday. The poems are reprinted here with the permission of the author.

    If you are reading this on another web site other than Tattoosday, without attribution, please note that it has been copied without the author's permission and is in violation of copyright laws. Please feel free to visit and read our original content. Please let me know if you saw this elsewhere so I contact the webmaster of the offending site and advise them of this violation in their Terms of Use Agreement.

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