Commas, wonderful commas

Last October, we posted the story of Ernie Ray, who is committed to getting a comma from each of our tattoo projects and has also offered to pay for someone else to get a comma as part of each project. In October, Ernie had just gotten his Love Letter To the World comma inked and was ready to sponsor someone else’s.

In January, Tara Zlacki sent us an email, asking if the comma covered by Ernie was still available. It was. Her email resulted in two meetings.

The first one was with Ernie. It was a snowy day in February and Ernie was able to take a break from his job to have a cup of coffee with us. We met at Third Street Coffee to catch up and to do the hand-off.

The hand-off of the comma money

The hand-off of comma money

The second one was with Tara, also at Third Street Coffee. It was March, the sun was shining, and we were glad to make a new friend.

Tara got her Love Letter To the World comma in May.

Tara Zlacki's comma (photograph courtesy of Tara Zlacki)

Tara Zlacki’s comma (photograph courtesy of Tara Zlacki)

Yesterday, Tara sent us the following story:

“Life is ever-changing, layer after layer, transition after transition. A comma, to me, signifies a building block. After being knocked down, I rise, like a phoenix spreading her wings stronger and wider than ever. No period to end my story, but rather a comma to keep the story rolling into beautiful new adventures and duties.

I love the Earth we live on. I am named after her … Tara. Love Letter To The World, so beautiful, so impactful, moved me to tears. It resonated in my gut, pushing uncontrollable tears down my cheeks. To see God’s beautiful children all over the surface of the Earth coming together in agreement and love to honor her, themselves, and each other was something I had to be a part of! I desire to live in a society that deeply understands the necessity of compassion, care, and community, and which lives out the action, so finding the Love Letter To the World community strengthened my hope for this.

I am so thankful to be a part of such a beautiful community, making a bold awareness-raising statement. Thank you!

Also, I would like to pay forward a comma for $50,


So, if you would like to get a LLTW comma courtesy of Tara, send us a message. We promise to feature your comma, too, on our blog.

Our love letter in Hungarian

-click here to listen to “Love Letta To de Worl’” in Hungarian-

Like so much about this artwork, the Hungarian translation, too, is the result of a happy mix of people and events: it is the product of at least one random encounter (Kremena first met Lujza Hayes Nehrebeczky at the Hive, a hair salon in Lexington, Kentucky, where the two of them were getting haircuts at the same time), months of perseverance (while Lujza was finding just the right words), and a trip to Hungary last fall. Thank you, Lujza, for lending your translation skills to this artwork.

We recorded Lujza reading Frank X Walker’s poem in Shangri-la Productions. A shout out to its owner, Duane Lundy, for never failing to accommodate our busy schedules and for ensuring the beautiful sound of the translations.

Finally, a word of thanks to Ximena McCollum, another participant in Love Letter To the World. Unrelated to Lujza, Ximena also traveled to Hungary a few months ago. She sent us this photograph of Budapest, Lujza’s hometown.

Ximena's photo

Ximena McCollum’s photograph of Budapest, Hungary