Some people talk to their therapists, or their bartenders. I talk to the people who cut my hair. When I was getting a trim earlier this week, we got on the topic of tattoos. She had lots, and I only have a couple. I want another one, a larger one, but I want it to be something meaningful to me, and I haven’t quite figured out what.
“I have this recurring dream, though,” I told her.
Snip snip, comb, tug. “What’s your dream?”
“Well, I’m in this desert landscape, and I’m following a coyote.
(Awesome coyote photo courtesy of Josh Felise, Unslpash)
“And he goes into this house that’s out here in the middle of nowhere, and it’s kind of surreal because it has openings for windows but no windows, you know?”
“No windows. Weird. What next?”
“Well anyway, he goes inside and I follow him in, and he goes into a bedroom where there’s a bed, and he crawls underneath the covers like he’s hiding. But when I walk in, I can see the lump under the covers that’s him, so I say, ‘You know I can see you.’ And he says, ‘I know.’” (Because if a coyote talks in your dream, that just makes logical sense, right?—ed.)
“And that’s when I wake up. So I’ve been thinking a tattoo of a coyote, but I want to figure out what he stands for first.”
“Naw,” she said. “You’re the coyote.”
“Yeah. And the desert, that’s so surreal and barren, you know? Have you ever been to the desert?”
“I lived there for four years when I was growing up.”
“Maybe there’s something you still need from the desert. Maybe you should go back.”
She kept cutting and combing, and I said, “Maybe I should.”
So, there’s your writing prompt, which is kind of a mad-libs type prompt: take an animal, a landscape, and a building—they can be of any kind—and write something incorporating all three. Meanwhile, I’m going to see if I can’t figure out what my coyote tattoo should look like.