Snakes

from Waterwitch by Elizabeth Hummel

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about

I wrote this song in 1991, based on a dream. The dream seemed like an ancient ancestral memory, on a poetic level if not literally. I was a woman living in a tribe by a river, engaged in a ritual with blue paint on my palms and snakes on my arms. The women standing by the river were finding our power together, engaged in a fight against the patriarchy, "that man on the cliff" who does not understand us because he does not want to understand us. He wants us to stay under his foot because that serves him better.

Women have been in this fight against our oppression for decades, centuries, millennia. Good men are also in this fight and have always been in this fight. This fight is not over. I wrote this to connect to the women before me, and I wrote it for the women who come after me. What will you create this time, woman?

lyrics

Snakes move in your eyes
like they moved on your arms that day
you turn to me slowly
If only I could remember you say
If only I could remember you say

Faces turn on the foam
you stand on the bank at the river’s bend
blue paint on your palms
And that man on the cliff, he doesn’t understand
and that man on the cliff, he doesn’t understand
And that man on the cliff, he doesn’t understand
What will you release this time, woman?
what will you embrace this time, woman?
what will you create this time, woman?

Chants burn with incense
you are standing so close to me
you wear the locket
And somewhere in this great land is the key
somewhere in this great land is the key
And somewhere in this great land is the key

What will you ignite this time, woman
For what will you fight this time, woman
In what will you delight this time, woman?

Snakes move in your eye
like they moved on your arms that day
you turn to me slowly
If only I could remember you say
if only I could remember you say

credits

from Waterwitch, released January 6, 2009
harmonies by Betsy Grace
Engineering by Brian Castillo

license

all rights reserved

tags

about

Elizabeth Hummel Olympia, Washington

I have been writing songs most of my life. A good bit of recording and performing too. Money comes and goes, but the muse is precious and timeless. I pray that my songs help people through darkness as well as celebrate the light. This music is a village and I am not alone. I am deeply grateful to the many people who have helped me birth these songs in so many ways. You are the Love! ... more

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