Get a Taste of Southern Religion: Lick a Boondock Witch

Y’all, I feel like I’m having an affair with this book.  Mayhap I’m cheating on y’all.  The guilt has gotten to me–after all, you folks were the first ones who validated my Southern voice and let me hang out a spell on the net.  Therefore, for my beloved readers and friends, the following is the first (unedited) page of Boondock Witch (had to get permission/legalities in order first):


The day that I realized my fingers could manipulate molecules and charge fireflies into a sacred dance is my first and most resilient memory of Southern summers in Alabama. I grew up with red-clay stains that were like a second skin on my heels. I grew up surrounded by “Amens” and hand-caught catfish frying in cast iron. I grew up in a land peppered by wooden crosses nestled firmly beside plastic Santas in the pines along county roads. These images are tattooed across my bones: big, kind, hard-worked black hands rocking me to sleep, goat stews over giant kettles and slices of salted watermelon running pink blood down small, white knuckles, planks set out for cloggin’ and fiddles lined up, precariously, against the wood of a front porch while the sky changes to indigo and chases the mosquitos back into the wind. I am Southern, from birth to death. But, laws, that ain’t all.

I stand beside you in Aisle Two at the local Piggly Wiggly, my younguns kicked the ball with yours every fall and my home was the first one you brought those trick-or-treaters to in October. You know the house? It’s the one with all the pumpkins and hay bales, glittering black with cobwebs in candlelight with the front porch light on and all the best candy. I’m the one broken hearts run to—all ragged and rusted—for advice when that man runs off with some harlot, or your baby gets knocked up all improper, or something just “don’t feel right” in the house. You know me. I’m in every town here in the Deep South. I am your councilwoman, your postmaster, your fifth-grade teacher—and sometimes—I’m your youth minister. And even as you have always known my presence here on this sacred land, in your sacred hearts, I’m the one you vote hard against, pray for and deny, over and over, as a natural occurrence within this haunted, too-tightly noosed Bible Belt. You’ve guessed my name, yes? Has it gnawed somewhere in the back of that tongue that has also chewed chaw, gossip and fatback? I’ve grown weary waiting for validation. My soul is tired of hoping that, someday, you will open this closet door out of love, respect and kinship. It’s a nice enough little box, complete with brooms and drying mugwort, that you have fashioned for me. I am your forsaken secret, an uppity abomination of your carefully crafted institutions . . . and this disinheritance has done damage to my holy blood. I fear that the time has come, my sweet sister South, to speak that name you have sewn up so tight and deep into the tapestry of your mystery, your history and your memory:

I’m a Witch. No, that’s not quite right, is it? I’m your witch, the keeper of your dreams and the administrator of your desires. And I’ve had about enough of this political exile. Guess who’s coming to dinner? *

*The above text is copyrighted to Seba O’Kiley and may not be reprinted without permission.  (Although, re-blogging is permissible.)

32 Comments on “Get a Taste of Southern Religion: Lick a Boondock Witch

  1. Your little tease has captured my attention! Now I can’t wait to read the rest of it! Be sure to let us know when it’s done, I want to be one of the first to buy a copy. 🙂 Have a wonderful 4th of July weekend.

  2. What a powerful, distinctive voice. You’ve grabbed me right at page one. Can’t wait for the rest. It is truly bad form to hurry a writer, so you’ll have to forgive me…HURRY!!!!

  3. All I can say is “Preach it, Sister!”. I am very much looking forward to reading your book, and I hope to meet you at one of the Southern Gatherings some day.

  4. I’m both technically and not technically Southern, depending on who you ask. Oklahoma, yknow. But I consider myself at least half Southern. I say y’all and ain’t and I love cornbread, beans, and good fried chicken. But I’m considered ‘unAmerican’ by people because I also love greens, hate bacon, and am not a huge fan of pie. Oh and I practice an ‘alternative’ religion. But mostly, it think it’s the bacon and pie. Anyways, here here on this and I can’t wait for your book. I might have to wait a little, but I plan on buying it. Thanks for posting the first page, gives us a hint at the Southern Fried Sass to come.

    • Lol, I think you are right: it’s probably the bacon and the pie. But, you had me at cornbread. I anoint thee Southern. 🙂 For what it’s worth!

  5. You had me in the first paragraph, and now I’m eagerly (and battling with the impatience!) waiting for the day we get to hear you say it’s all done, and ready for us to buy! Because truly, I’m always looking for books written by full-time, every-damn-day witches (pardon my language). I don’t mind plunking my pin-money on those people’s books, because I know I’ll learn something, enjoy the lesson and be entertained along the way too.
    Beautiful Seba, if this is the start of the book…I don’t mind being blog-glected. It’s going to be very, very much worth the wait. 🙂

    Now, write faster LOL!

    Many hugs from Australia…

    • Hot-gravy-biscuit, you said: pardon my language. Then you said: blog-glected.

      Sigh. What the Sam Hill are you doing living that far away??????

      Love, kisses, and Dixie Crystal: Me

  6. That is so beautiful it hurts. I must be sure to supplement the flavor of your words with wine to intensify their flavor.

    • I can’t wait either! Now, if someone would just teach my classes, tend my garden, mentor my magic students, then there’s the hubby . . . Sigh. I’m running away! 🙂

  7. My, but you do have a way with words! What a tease. I’m not southern – from the north, ya know.
    Perhaps that’s why I find your world so fascinating. From what I’ve read here in blogland, I am so looking forward to your book. Take all the time you need. The anticipation is fun, and I always hate it when I finish a good book.

  8. merry meet miss mama witch. 😉
    (and although i’m north beyond yankee, i know enough to use my manners, but also wise enough to not call such enternal, beautiful soul as yours Ma’am. i lived down yonder. *laugh*)

    Piggly Wiggly was one of the places, growing up in the midwest, i could find- not children (although you certainly started teaching early of motherhood)- but a woman, a being of another kind, an acknowledgement in the perfectly make-uped, brightly colored textiles– this so called clown (i didn’t know what a ‘harlot’ was back then… it’s intent made me scared) who suddenly assuaged the world beyond what i was aware needed healing in that moment i would follow behind in the aisles; our smiles played hide and seek.

    You were the women i knew my sisters could be if they claimed their power. You were the women i would want to be if this Male God were not like the men you inevitably would show up with and our game forgotten until your make up would be incorrectly thick and shameful– sickenly cruel in it’s assestment of what power gender should hold.

    You are the women who give me my own fire, our paths twisted inherently; my personal Tori Amoses.

    I owe you more than the Fag Hag Icon could represent, for secretly, powerfully, you brought me to the Heart Circle and showed me… in more ways than one… “It Takes ONE to know ONE.”

    and, since i’m cursed a man, with a mouth like YOURS (respectfully, ma’am) .. here’s a gallon of Sweet Tea, a pint of Meade… respect beyond our unfamiliarity… get back to work. Wymen (and weird myn) NEED the light you will shine upon EVERY path.

    much light in return, einsof

    • And you are the fuel in my fire. The reason I breathe when I am tired, the cause I fight without payment, the earth that edges around fruit and turns it into fire. I am honored. And in your service, forever. Seba

  9. sorry… i should have mentioned, i was a child myself. it was not you children who fascinated me… but the MOTHER. the single mother i sometimes was not supposed to even BE there. you knew that… and you provided solace anyway,

    and you Ladies taught me Tarot. now look what i can do! *LAUGH*

    namaste ❤

  10. I did and I’m still here. Your first page is like reading about my own life. Please continue to weave your magic across the page. This will be delightful to read with my cats and dog snuggled at my feet.

  11. thanks seba, you write the life of so many of us.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: