Alexandra Villarreal
March 04, 2015 9:22 am

Literature is a powerful medium, and sometimes, it resonates with us so much that it feels almost like an extension of our being. Personally, Mrs. Ramsay’s stream of consciousness in To the Lighthouse really speaks to me; the prose is eloquent, but it’s the sentiment that can bring me to tears. For others, Le Petit Prince is poetry for the soul, or Jane Austen and her heroines communicate something about womanhood that defies generation and era to remain relevant. Somehow, there’s always that one line in a favorite text that’s pure euphoria, that will always fly past flesh and bone to pierce the heart.

Or so we think, but maybe it’s a good idea to test that hypothesis before permanently tattooing anything anywhere, even an incredible quote that changed our lives. Of course, I’m pretty noncommittal, so I could just be over-thinking things. But even if there is a new tattoo removal cream soon to be going the market, should we really go through the pain of getting inked without knowing if we plan to keep it forever? Thankfully, now there’s a way to see if you want The Great Gatsby on the nape of your neck for all the days. Check out these awesome temporary literary tattoos, courtesy of Lithographs, where a set of two will only set you back $5. (Talk about low commitment.) Maybe they can help you decide if “my bounty is as boundless as the sea, my love as deep” means enough to you to have Shakespeare’s words explicitly define who you are to the outside world.

In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Huck’s childlike innocence is sometimes refreshing and even exhilarating, especially when contrasted with Tom Sawyer’s deceit. It’s always nice to be reminded of the basic principles of life, and that’s what Huck does best—especially when his words are written on your arm. (Get it here.)

Dorothy and her ruby reds have become iconic. But before the silver screen co-opted L. Frank Baum’s sweet story of a young girl filled with wanderlust, captivated readers turned pages with excitement and attention. His words, “There’s no place like home,” are especially meaningful to those of us who have left home to explore the great beyond, all the while knowing that our friends and family will be there when we need them. (Get it here.)

For the girl who lives life on the edge, loves Jack London and everything about White Fang. (Get it here.)

“So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.” This Gatsby quote is one of my all-time top-10 sentences from classic literature. I think we can all understand the struggle of wanting to escape our own histories but constantly being pulled toward our memories. Some are painful, others glorious. They all leave an impression. But, like I said, it’s only temporary. (Get it here.)

Maybe, like me, you loved Romeo and Juliet and were especially fond of the balcony scene, but that’s unlikely given how many people complain about the superficiality and downright fickleness of Shakespeare’s young, star-crossed lovers. However, there is no one — I repeat, no one — who can deny the brilliance of one of the Bard’s more brooding play, Hamlet. This quote from Lord Polonius is particularly on point. (Get it here.)

While Elizabeth is Pride and Prejudice’s protagonist and is one of the most likable, intriguing characters in the Western canon, it’s the detestable Miss Bingley’s exclamation that has become one of Jane Austen’s most famous lines. Of course, Miss Bingley isn’t very interested in reading after all; she’s much more focused on Mr. Darcy and his fortune. But for any avid bookworm, no truer words have ever been written. (Get it here.)

Check out even more of Lithograph’s temp lit tattoos and maybe splurge on this TS Eliot quote: “Do I Dare Disturb the Universe?” Just remember, it’s only temporary.

Images via here.

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