We were tagged in Orange County.
As soon as Dad saw it,
he started working over
the graffiti with paint thinner and sandpaper
scraping until blood filled the space between his fingertips and nails
until his tan skin became brittle and thin,
tender-pink like the brick wall he cleaned.
He put himself,
blood and skin,
into erasing that primitive spell
over space and identity,
he scraped until his shoulders ached
because he had learned
that you were as much the place you lived
as what you did,
and he did not want to be poor