I have so many memories but few are recorded in pictures. They lay in my skin and psyche, raw and swollen. My ego sliced to ribbons for years, burns and holes in my arms from bonfires and farm work. Pieces of my heart missing, given to the wrong woman time and time again. But my favorite is on my right wrist. It's not old enough to turn white just yet, still pink and puffy like crying eyes. A one-inch perfectly straight line bright against the tan backdrop and ink that surrounds. Given to me during a favor as no good deed goes unpunished. Left by the jagged metal of a mutilated Ford. I never understood how it ended so uniform. The one on my left wrist I covered in ink to turn it into a shooting star, but I refuse to cover this one. I gained it with friends and and didn't notice it until the drops of blood off the end of my thumb demanded my attention. It is an unfinished arrow on my dominant hand reminding me I choose to move forward or back. I can continue the direction that left this mark. I can continue to foster friendships with others in a place of solace like that garage smelling of used oil and cigarettes, tasted like whisky and laughter. Felt like home and belonging. Or I can go back to being the angry goblin in his cave refusing the company of anyone new. I've come to see this tiny line the pinks of a sunset cloudscape as my guide towards strength, because the strongest part is a healed scar. Thicker than it ever was, reminding you that you can live through the damage. I've had this ink in my new armor since I was 24, and though it continues to be tested, this old link still shines bright.