On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of my mother’s death, I find myself longing to reconnect not only to my own mother but to the very idea of mother. Not just at home but in Cuba where the maternal presence I long for takes the shape of Our Lady of Charity, patron saint and mother to an entire island.
I. 1974. Puerto Angel, Oaxaca
I’m ten years old when my parents and I vacation at a small fishing village in Mexico. My mother and I dig for seashells, pose in ankle deep water while my father takes our picture. “Lift your chin a little,” he says. “Turn your face to the left.”
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