I read the story I'm looking for in the early nineties, as part of an anthology. The narrator was a man who had been at least partially responsible for the (I believe, but am not certain) nuclear/radiation catastrophe. They are metaphorically and literally ridden by the infected full-back tattoo of his daughter, who died in the catastrophe.
The devastated wasteland is haunted by roses which grow into human bodies and bloom by bursting through the skull, after which they continue to walk and look for more hosts. I didn't buy the collection at the time, but the one story stuck in my mind.