“Images of My Mother”

“Images of My Mother”

I want to tattoo my body
with the image of my mother
watch my hands master spices
see my calves grow in size
so I too can run marathons
with four babies on my shoulders

When my voice turns into hers
My tongue will grow heavy
with tastes of herbs and te amo‘s
watch my whispers soothe cyclones
remind all daughters to breathe
again and again

When I crawl into her skin
and I taste the church’s wine
I see God underneath my eyelids
feel the lord’s blood join our own
and the darkness would feel warm
for the first time

I want to tattoo my body
with the image of my mother
so when I look in my reflection
I can finally believe
I too have the strength
of a thousand women

7 thoughts on ““Images of My Mother”

  1. You are amazing and never alone. You tell the story of thousands of women who suffer silently. You are chosen and have made us proud! You will accomplish all you have set out to do. You are stronger then you know…you are us! Thank you for standing tall, showing the world that we are intelligent and very capable. Thank you for your voice. I first learned of you from your piece, Academia, Love Me Back. Your words reflected how I felt for years. It took me a while to break their biased measuring stick and realize that I was merely blooming into who I was destined to be and sometimes that frightens people. That is their problem not mine. I must continue to grow and spread my wings before my sun sets. Continue to learn, to share your voice and grow into your own. The best to you!


  2. Don’t give up. Who you are and what you’re doing matters. Your presence is important. The implicit racism you’re encountering needs to be addressed, and you have the capacity to effect change through your struggles. And take time for yourself. To replenish. To let go. To find simple quiet in all of this so you can continue. I’m part of the dominant culture. I can go in when I see people of my culture do this and address it from this side. And Tiffany – I do. I know hundreds of people like me who do. Keep up what you’re doing. You aren’t alone in this struggle, and though we can never know what it’s like to be in your situation, we’re working on our side to make change so this kind of insanity decreases.


  3. Sweetheart, you are my new hero! I am a Latina who was born and raised in the South Bronx by a strong Grandmother and Mother. I am a mother, a registered nurse, a wife and an artist among other things. I work in an environment where men attempt to exert their power over me daily and FAIL! They fail because my grandmother would turn over in her grave if I allowed it. Fight sweet girl! You have the foundation of your Mother. This is absolutely beautiful and has made my day. Thank you ❤


  4. Your writing is beautiful. This piece in particular touched me, and made me think of my mother and grandmother. Thank you for sharing.

    I came here through your post “Academia, Love Me Back”, which, by the way, was recently shared in a private Facebook group of 7,000+ mothers in academia. Keep writing, and remember that for all those who will tear you down, there are thousands of strong women ready to amplify your voice and lift you up.


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