The Stories My Tattoos Tell

Some thoughts & photos on why I write the way I do, hope, mental health, and faith

Me and my ink… more to come in the future
Yup, all black… plus life with a toddler who rams shopping carts into your legs while taking selfies

The Wolf

This is an homage to my name — Benjamin. In Hebrew, Benjamin means “favored son” or “son of the right hand.” My brother’s name, however, is Andrew which means “strong and manly.” Growing up I always thought my name sucked and my brother’s was awesome. But in my early thirties, while reading through the biblical narrative of Genesis, I discovered a passage in which Jacob gives a prophecy over his twelve sons. He tells his son Benjamin this:

“Benjamin is a ravenous wolf. He devours the enemy by day, and divides the spoils by night.”

The tribe of Benjamin subsequently became known as the fiercest and most skilled warriors.

The Angel & Demon

This was a dream my father had about me while I was in Iraq. Before shipping out, my dad told me that while in Iraq I would face the most intense mental struggles and spiritual battles I’d ever been through. I thought he was a crazy loon high on Jesus juice because I was agnostic. In his dream he explained that demons and creatures came out to attack me while I was on a patrol. But an angel came and knocked away every attack.

Return of the King

One of my favorite scenes in Lord of the Rings is when Aragorn shows up in the Battle of the Pelennor Fields with his ghost crew while stepping into his role as King. Most everyone knows JRR Tolkien was a Christian whose faith influenced his writing. Throughout the Lord of the Rings there’s this hope that Aragorn will one day step into his role as King and things will be set right.

Some other tattoos I have

“I hope it is true that a man can die and yet not only live in others but give them life, and not only life, but that great consciousness of life.”
— Jack Kerouac

Storyteller | Combat wounded veteran | Metalhead | Designer | My war memoir—Where Cowards Go to Die—drops Spring 2022: https://benjaminsledge.com