Once the province of sailors & bikers, tattoos have emerged from backdoor parlors to suburban shopping malls. Today they adorn starlet's ankles, housewives' shoulders, & bankers' biceps. Many of our most gifted writers across several colorful decades have found the images of the tattoo needle a vivid subject for the language of the pen. These stories, poems, & memoirs span the range of human experience, from the awesome to the absurd. From Flannery O'Connor's likeness of God to Sylvia Plath's $15 eagle, from Herman Melville's power of the primitive to Mark Doty's embrace of the ineradicable to Franz Kafka's lasting mark of the penal colony, this bold exploration of the illuminated body is guaranteed to get under your skin.