Granny Witchfire

White Lunar Mirror 2.10.17 Full Moon in Leo, Lunar Eclipse GAP

“Listen,” I say to Baseer, “This is how it happened.  I greeted the crow and it flew into my mouth, put the fire in my belly, but the crow was carrying the fire for the ones who gave it to me.  You see, once, long ago, my mother was a cold woman. She would not let me out, so the doctors drugged her to open her up, relax her a little. The day she was giving birth to me I was stuck in a frigid place, watery and dark. She was terrified, her woman’s mound shaved of growth by strangers, her belly heaving and quaking, she retreated into the darkness of fear and not knowing what to do she clamped down and struggled against what she was feeling. Resisting primal urges, she was too far from the comfort of what’s suitable and civilized, what was known to her. She’d been taught to be proper, a gentle woman, a little good and nice woman. Yet what she was feeling was wild and she wanted to scream. Instead of sounding it out, heaving and breathing, entering the unknown, instead of this she pursed her lips and controlled herself. She choked the voice, and in holding on too tightly she choked my voice before I was born. Strangled it while she strangled herself, strangled us and what could have been before it came to be.

Now, this is how come I’m called lucky, for as luck would have it, my grandmother was there with her. My father’s mother, she was a witch woman. With her was my great-grandmother. She too was a witch woman, my mother’s mother’s mother; she had learned to conceal her witch ways behind the folds and sheets of prescribed religion yet she was a witch woman, hidden in plain sight. These two crones, they sat with my mother and prayed and sang and tried to warm her up with their witch woman ways. But my mother, she was too cold. She disappeared into the icy waters and stilled everything. The doctors strapped her to a gurney and rolled her out. They would have to cut her open and pull me out of the glacier she had trapped me in, if I was to live.

So these granny witches, in desperation, they did something they’d never done before. They tried another way at first, like I said, they tried warming her up with prayer and song and rubs and encouraging words. But my mother is a ying woman, the sort of ying woman who freezes when her mind doesn’t comprehend intellectually what is happening. Birth is not an intellectual process. For a frosty woman with attachments to mind thoughts, birth is a hard place to be. For a woman who doesn’t like hard places, it is an impossible event, and my mother simply disappeared into a protective frozen cocoon. This is important for you to know, not to judge my mother by, but because it is part of how I came to unfold. You see, my granny witches knew there was no point giving any more fire to a cold ying woman. So they did this instead.

They gave all their fire to me. They sang to me and crooned and lit me up inside her.

“Negaah kon,” they said, and so I opened my eyes and saw, before I was born. The sound of their warm voices penetrated the icicle I was stuck inside.

“Negaah kon, bacheh, we’re going to warm you up and cook you, then you’ll see light, and you have to work your way, push your way out toward this light or else you’ll be frozen forever. Do you understand?”

They sang and prayed and crooned and fueled me full of their fire. They sent the crow who came ratataptap pecking with more fire. So much fire! It was a lifeline I held onto and began melting through the ice, on my way out to those sweet voices that promised of something wonderful, hinted at love untold, centuries old, I was on my way to those voices!

So as my mother was being wheeled away, to the doctor’s surprise, I began to come out into this world and my mother relaxed and sighed a huge sigh of relief; she didn’t have to do anything after all and it was going to work out anyway, the easy way for her, the hard way for me. That is how I came into this world with my eyes open and looking for the people whose voices I heard, the singing voices, the praying voices, the warm toasty loving voices that spoke of stars and light and grace. That is how I came to have this fire inside me in this place.

Sometimes I’ve been told I’m aggressive. This is my yang, that fire from my granny and great granny who gave me all their fire and urged me out into this world where I was lost for a long time living with a cold woman who was not receptive to that fire burning inside me. And the fire had a longing. It was given to me for a purpose and it sought to be released to purpose. It burned so hot. I tried giving it to my mother but she did not understand. What she did not understand, she resisted. My granny witches did not live with me nor were they there to guide me for the years I lived with my mother, and her equally cold mother. Both frigid women, afraid to burn, afraid to yearn, afraid, so afraid!

It made me afraid, but you see, even though they were not there, I had the fire from the blood of my people, my ancestors, running molten through me, and it kept me warm and alive when I should have gone to sleep otherwise and died of despair. So I am aggressive sometimes, you could say, or you could know this: it is the fire talking, the fire walking, the fire singing given to me, the descendant, of fiery granny witches, star witches, bright lights, they shine for me in the darkest of nights, and so my eyes they opened me awake.

Some say there are paths of fate and fortune, spirit and soul, that intertwine and come into play, setting events into motion. In this way, in time, stories get written, sometimes they simply leap off the palm of a hand and fly as an arrow to worlds of possibility where they hit their mark and crack the shells to seeds. The exposure to certain circumstances, the nature of the seed indeed and how it responds, then determines what bursts forth and is born, unborn, born again, until the intertwining paths align in ways that shape a weave of reciprocity that some call lucky.

Is it luck that the granny witches were there when I was born? Is it luck that coaxed me to respond as I did? Did they feed me their fire as a response or were they the call I responded to? What is fate and fortune then? Where does choice intertwine with spirit and soul? The parts of fate and fortunes of many spirits and many souls all converging and coinciding, responding or withdrawing from the happenings that shape the vessel we ride the rainbow on.

Now that you know this, know a bit more: their fire, it is melting through the stranglehold on my voice. I can feel it loosening. This question you asked of me, it gave me an opportunity to practice speaking, thank you. Soon my eyes will have a compadre in my voice, then I will become S-p-ee-k-ing Woman, but for the time being I am your eyes Baseer, so what is it you’d like to see tonight? Ah yes, the glowing moon, come I will describe her to you against the inky sky where the clouds are haloed in golden moonlight . . . .”

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