Sunday, November 22, 2015

Tattoo Heritage

What is my heritage? How many different peoples populate my genetics? Where were/are they from? What have they passed on to me?

From my parents and grandparents, my sole inheritance is Polish. In some very ways, that leaves open the possibility ~ more likely, the probability ~ that I have a variety of genetics. Poland's history is a country often overrun by outsiders. If recent history is any tell, that means the men being killed and the women being raped and left pregnant with mixed blood children.

My father was dark ~ black hair, olive skin, brown eyes. My mother, fair ~ a 'carrot-top' child, chestnut-haired adult, medium-toned skin, blue eyes.  How did two such varied types come from the same small land? It was explained as 'the hill people' and 'the valley people' ~ presumably those from the open valley being more subject to raids and intermarriage. Were those my mother's people?

So why the interest in women with tattooed faces? Because I feel drawn to these women. I always have. It's as though something within me searches for the tribe or tribes from which I've come.

The woman above is Armenian. The image is from the Genocide Museum. Her coloring and features ~ straight nose, wide eyes, dark brows ~ are so close to my father's. Could I have come from her lineage?

Then there's the Kurdish woman. Blue-eyed, fairer-skinned. Is her lineage akin to mine? Her eyes are deeper set, but that dimple on her left cheek looks like the one I inherited from my mother.

What about your heritage? Is there some cultural element ~ a tattoo, hair style, movement ~ that attracts you without your knowing why? How much does it matter where we come from? What tribe do you claim and belong to now?

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