Mercy Tullis-Bukhari is a poet, essayist, and fiction writer who finds inspiration from being a Bronx-bred Afro-Latina American, Honduran and Garifuna, of Jamaican descent. Her maternal grandparents are from Belize and her paternal grandparents are from Jamaica. They all immigrated to Honduras, where her parents were born. She is proud of her immigrant roots, being first generation, and because she was and always will be a Bronx girl, she grew up eating lots of pizza in between all of the homeland dishes.
Being Afro-Latina American, to Mercy, means total acceptance of self. Who she is today reflects her Africanness, her Latinidad, and being American. She validates her identity by accepting her history, and proudly accepts that being a Black woman, Latina, who is a Bronx-bred American, is the sopa marinero of who she is today.
She graduated from New York University with a Bachelor’s in English and American Literature, minoring in English Education. She later received her Master’s from Herbert H. Lehman College in English Literature. She also received her Master’s in Fine Arts from The College of New Rochelle, in Creative Writing.
Mercy can also be found on FB and IG, where she posts events she is a part of and writings she has done.
In her writing, she focuses on the woman-experience through individuality, motherhood, and sexuality. She published two books of poetry titled Smoke (Blind Beggar Press, Inc.) and Mango (Ocean Taste Publications). Her third book of poetry, The Little Deaths, has just been published by Get Fresh Books. She is a Callaloo Fellow and was the Poet Laureate of the New York University 30th Anniversary Celebration Gala. Mercy was named one of the “8 Authors Bringing Afro-Latina Stories to the Forefront” by Remezcla magazine and was a Pushcart Prize nominee in 2016 for her essay, “Black Dolls for Everyone, published in the anthology All the Women in My Family Sing, edited by Deborah Santana, and also in 2019 for her poem “Dear Brother.” Mercy has two essays that were published and recorded for Read 650: Where Writers Read on YouTube: “Spanish 1” and “When Mami Put a Gun in My Hand.” She still enjoys doing poetry readings throughout New York City, has contributed poems to music producers for compilations, and is actively completing her first novel during quarantine.
Mercy believes that as a woman and an individual, staying busy and relevant encourages her to be open to challenges while being a positive example of strength and individuality for her two children. The piece that she is proudest of is “Naming It,” dedicated to her daughter. In this piece, Mercy writes about acceptance of self and body with raw honesty and love.