A Song for Grandmother: Daughters of Hoodoo

We are women of the wild

Skin like the soil and mountains at night

We drank from the rivers

And feed on the moon

We hold hands with our grandmothers

We talk in traces of holy footsteps

Can you see them

Those wide women

Wide like the earth

Dressed always in white

Ready soldiers of love

They breathe blessed texts

And sing in tones of the soul

You can feel them in your bones

Have you seen them?

They collect in the kitchen

Laughing recipes for survival

While keeping warm the fire

Holding the universe

They cultivate love

In swamps and deserts

She whispers: The forests and friends can both kill or heal you.

                     Walking in the curative realm

Returning to Freedom: Land Back

And Then there are those who are magical and hunted

She who lives on the intersecting edge of oppression

Carving out a reality

Wings unaccustomed to wind

Learning the sky

With ropes pulling at her throat

What’s it like to breathe in a loose noose 

Careful not to lose her footing 

Standing on the borderline of death and liberation

Holding a shot gun with a baby in her belly

Surrounded with bitter poison 

Yet, guided by her grandmother’s song for the moon 

Finding the forest

Deciphers its fragrances

And then back in the city they’ll say. . .

                          This the tea…

                          She resigned to live the old way

                          Living with her family’s land down in Texas



The mission of Rava Chapman is to create and maintain healing spaces. She is invested in the traditions and legacies of Africana Indigenous people.  Her work centers around developing healthy relations with the self, one’s kin and community, natural ecology, and with the Great Spirit. She is a copper-colored, Africana Indigenous woman and both a descendant of the Maroon people and those who were enslaved. She is an Afro Chicana and Pan Africanist.  She was raised in Black Folk culture and the Black Church.

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