It hurt more than I thought it would. It was bearable enough though. After a few seconds of pain he would let up, gifting an immediate moment of relief before he’d continue again. I felt so out of place in that room- surrounded by people and images that years of conditioning taught me to judge so harshly. Topless women, bleeding hearts, demons and gods— Tattoos, they said, defiled the body.
“No!” I’d answer confidently. Of course I wouldn’t. In all honesty, I wouldn’t have sprayed graffiti on so much as the side of a dumpster, never mind a sacred building.
“Well,” the teacher would
explain, “God says your body is a temple. So if you’d never spray
graffiti on God’s house, you must also never put graffiti on your
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