He came home one night
with a blue-black chain of Celtic knots
circling his left arm.
He twisted his wrist
to show how each knot
laced all the way around.
He said it hurts more to do it that way.
He told me he researched how
each loop connected to another,
how each round part met a sharp point.
He had pored over books in the library
to find a design with no beginning or end.
At night I touched his shoulder,
traced the raised parts on his arm,
trying to learn the secret language of his skin.
He rolled over to the other side of the bed
where his body didn’t tell a story,
and when I closed my eyes,
I pretended each interlocking spiral on his skin
belonged to me.
Marie Abate is a writer from Baltimore. She recently completed an M.A. in Writing from Johns Hopkins University. Her work has appeared in The Meadowland Review, Halfway Down the Stairs, Urbanite, In Posse Review, Bank-Heavy Press, Loop, Downer Magazine, Seltzer, Crack the Spine, and 20-Something Magazine.