I have a picture of the Artopa Belladonna etched upon my skin. In shades of gray and black and white, the deadly nightshade is forever nestled on my lower back. Though it is hidden from plain sight, it serves as a reminder of a secret joke; of what this flower means to me… deadly poison beautifully wrapped in a purple floral trap.

It is named after one of the 3 Fates; Atropa… She who cuts the thread of life. In full, the name is translated to mean, “Do not betray a beautiful lady…”

This hellish prison we call life would truly be uneventful if not for variety and that is what we are. Individuals with strengths and weaknesses all the same… the only thing that separates us is the varying degree of each aspect.

Yet a tiny flaw could cover the sky if that is all we see in one another…. …And those who see only cracks may wish to take a peek into the looking glass before shattering it by casting the first stone; for we see too clearly in others what we utterly despise in ourselves.

The beast was here all along…


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