I came to Reclaiming in 1991, already a Witch of my own making and ready for training. In 1993 I was invited to student teach in the San Francisco Bay Area Community. Since then I’ve done most everything from schlepping to bookkeeping to ritual planning, teaching, founding cells, and general rabble rousing. I am regularly awed and grateful to have received so many opportunities from this community. My life is richer for having walked this path.
I make my home north of San Francisco among the rolling hills of the Coastal Miwok, now known as San Rafael, California. I’m one of those rare Americans (people tell me so all the time) whose family has owned the same home/property for 4 generations. I don’t know if it makes a difference. I love that I walk the same hills and valley that I played in as a child. Its still open space, not exactly wild, but free for coyotes, fox, deer, bobcat, jackrabbits. Not to mention, owls and several varieties of raptors. The spirit of the Coast Miwok people, who lived here two hundred years ago, and before for millennia, is subtle. The obsidian arrow heads, the last remaining traces of them on the land, disappeared when I was a kid, or lie hidden beneath the foundations of houses in the neighborhood. Still, I am grateful to know a place so intimately.
My Magical practice is informed by the valley I live. There is a cemetery a block from my house, that backs up to that open space. Did my practice with the dead evolve out games of hide and seek amongst the graves stones as kid? Maybe. That and the Witches in fairytale forests, living with the wild on her doorstep. Every spring I sing up the land and every winter I sing it to sleep. Though that summer to winter period grows strange and extended, no longer in its old predictable place.
Preston Coyote Vargas
I live in the ancestral lands of the Coast Miwok and Suisun peoples. I honor their ancestors. And I thank the spirits of this place for joining me in right relationship. Yet my place of birth is in the lands of my grandmother’s ancestral people, the Wampanoag; “People of the First Light”. I live in the San Francisco Bay but the waters of Cape Cod periodically draw me back to Massachusetts.
I am Coyote. I am a Reclaiming witch and priest-ess. I am an Egungun (ancestor) priest and priest of Obatala in Ifa. I am a mesa carrier. I am a black man. A queer man. I am an anti-oppression scholar and activist. I am an artist of the spirits. I am imperfect and still evolving.
I have been practicing magic and facilitating group rituals for 20 years. My ancestors are ever present on my journey. My ritual practice is a blend of witchcraft, shamanic inspiration, ancestral healing traditions, hoodoo, sorcery, and Fey magic. It is interwoven with the knowledge I developed in my postgraduate degrees and my profession as a counselor. And the gifts I offer are tempered with healing justice, my awareness of privileged power dynamics and my commitments to anti-oppression.
I am honored to be invited to witness and share in this magic. And I am grateful to be here with all of you.
Lisa LindI have been practicing Reclaiming-style magic over 20 years. Born in Sweden, I grew up in the deep woods of unrelinquished Algonquin land in Canada before moving to Wurundjeri country. My ancestral gods and land spirits, such as the Scandinavian trolls and gnomes, have followed me during both immigrations. Turns out they find wombats as adorable as I do! Nonetheless, I have deeply felt the complexities of moving onto someone else's land with my own alien spirits in tow.
My activism takes the form of general shit-disturbing, rewriting gender policy, and creating avenues for Indigenous health initiatives and cultural education. I have devoted a large part of my life to understanding how our bodies function and to developing better treatments for those of us who are ill. My spirituality and scientific mind are inseparable and so my magic gets experimental. I relish embodied magic, gritty transformational work, and a good old-fashioned belly laugh. I work with the Dead in almost all the magic I do.
Over the years, I have been active in the Australian and international Reclaiming community as a bower priestess, general lackey, teacher, and witchcamp organiser. I know all roles in community to be equally necessary and sacred. I am truly honoured to be able to return to beautiful EarthSong in this capacity.
Sue BlackfeatherI was born on the land of the Taungurong people and now live within Wurrundjeri country. From a very young age I have felt the rhythms of the land through the soles of my feet as I freely roamed the vast paddocks and river’s edge of my childhood. I would sit quietly and listen to the songs of the Currawong and Magpie, wait patiently for a chance encounter with a Willy Wagtail or Echidna all the while surrounded by acres and acres of daffodils. I would lay upon the ground and sing to the Earth, sing to the wild life all around me. I would press my ear against the dirt, listening intently as I tried to hear what lay beneath.
Rhythm is where I find my heart-earth connection. My beating, human heart finds resonance with the rhythms and cycles of the Earth; an echo that reminds me to listen and stay in relationship with Her. In my garden or within a lake sanctuary close to home is where I work my magic. This is where I drum, sing and dance the rituals of connection. It is here that I witness the cycles of life, death, rebirth and transformation and where I learn to let go, trust and surrender.
I am a Scorpio witch, an Astrologer, a drummer, seeker, story teller, ritualist, grower of herbs, nurturer and resilient traveller.
With humility and excitement I embark on this journey with you all. I offer my voice and my drum to honour the rhythms of the land as we sing and dance our way home. I stand in witness as we celebrate the beauty and resilience of the land.
I find existing extremely mysterious. Here are some things I suspect I might be: An ever-changing constellation of stardust, cosmos, planet, biosphere, animal in ecosystem, Earth, Air, Fire, Water, Spirit, host of many microbes, human. I have human ancestors from England, Germany, and the Isle of Man. My bones and my beating heart grow in Darug and Gundungurra Country. I pay my respects to the Elders Past, Present and Emerging. I commit to ongoing listening, and learning what this really means.
Since I was a juvenile animal I’ve been taught to see the world as predominantly inert and uncommunicative. With the help of a variety of beloved beings, I’m slowly slowly slowly learning that I am listening, and communicating, and singing as and with the animate sacred world we are.
This mystery I am is very grateful to be coming to EarthSong this year. I’m especially excited to be working with the camp’s profound intention: to recognise what divides us from each other and our connection, and to love, to listen, and to sing our remembered connection home.
Since I was a juvenile animal I’ve been educated to see the world as predominantly inert and uncommunicative. With the help of a variety of beloved beings, I’m slowly slowly slowly learning that I am listening, and communicating, and singing as and with the animate sacred world we are.
This mystery I am, is very grateful to be coming to EarthSong this year. I’m especially excited to be working with the camp’s profound intention: to recognise what divides us from each other and our connection, and to love, to listen, and to sing our remembered connection home.
With a background in education, mental health, social and community welfare, she has a foundation in meaningful communication and people-guided practices.
A born witch and healer, Deb has spent her adult life developing relationship between spirit and worldly matters and passionately embraces the Reclaiming Community.
A caring and compassionate demeanour means a safe and supportive space to express your passion and walk between the worlds as we navigate the chasm to remember the song of the land together.
She looks forward to connecting and working magic with fellow EarthSong Campers, while engaging with the lands wisdom and bounty.
The Land whispers to Megan and sends messengers as she walks in silence or immersed in Her song. Born in Wurundjeri Country, Megan spent her first 10 years playing and walking with the spirits of the land, elementals and other beings in gardens, disused railway tracks, the parks and botanic gardens of Melbourne, Healesville and Bendigo. She now lives on Arakwal land, in Bundjalung Country near Byron Bay. Her relationship with the Land is a life-long love affair. They nourish, protect and love her and in return she walks, sings, celebrates in ritual, cares for Her creatures and does what she can to protect the Land and heal the wounds of human separation.
Megan's journey as a Reclaiming witch began with reading the Spiral Dance and discovering magical activism as a young lesbian and feminist in Queensland and Alice Springs in the late ‘80’s and Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp, UK in the early 90's. She attended the first CloudCatcher WitchCamp in 2012. A group from that Camp formed Byron Reclaiming and they have been celebrating and creating community rituals ever since. Magic changes consciousness and creates change in the world.
She practices acupuncture, healing, herbal medicine and homeopathy and teaches herbal medicine and homeopathy locally and internationally.