HoodWitch (ACRE) (Paperback)
Acre Books, 9781946724243, 112pp.
Publication Date: October 15, 2019
In this collection about resilience, Hicks speaks about giving her child up for adoption, mourning the death of her fiancé, and embracing the nonbinary femme body—persevering in the face of medical malpractice, domestic abuse, and police violence. The poems find people transformed, “remade out of smoke & iron” into cyborgs and wolves, machines and witches—beings capable of seeking justice in a world that refuses them the option.
Exploring the intersections of Christianity, modern mysticism, and Afrofuturism in a sometimes urban, sometimes natural setting, Hicks finds a place where “everyone everywhere is hands in the air,” where “you know they gonna push & pull it together. / Just like they learned to.” It is a place of natural magick—where someone like Hicks can have more than one name: where they can be both dead and alive, both a mortal and a god.
About the Author
Faylita Hicks (pronouns: she/her/they) is a queer writer and the Editor-in-Chief of Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Sierra Nevada University, and has received fellowships and residencies from Lambda Literary, Jack Jones Literary Arts, Tin House, Right of Return, and the Vermont Studio Center. Hicks's debut poetry collection HoodWitch (Acre Books, 2019) is a finalist for the 2020 Lambda Literary Award and the Julie Suk Award. Her poems and essays have been featured in or are forthcoming in Poetry Magazine, American Poetry Review, Poetry Daily, Slate, Longreads, Huffpost, Texas Monthly, Texas Observer, TheRumpus, Cincinnati Review, Adroit, Prairie Schooner, and elsewhere. Hicks is a 2020-2022 Texas Touring Artist for the Texas Commission on the Arts.
Praise For HoodWitch (ACRE)…
"What is the difference between a god and a Gawd? What makes a woman a HoodWitch? Faylita Hicks speaks masterfully on the homespun magic of Black women, women who use 'dime store candles' and Florida water to heal their wounds and care for themselves in a world that does not care for them. As much as these poems are battle cries, there is a sadness and a violence to them too. Gawdliness demands sacrifice. HoodWitch is a testament to the lineage of power, vulnerability, and strength."
— Christina Orlando
— Linden Avenue Literary Journal
— Kathryn Nuernberger
"In her tremendous debut, Faylita Hicks composes fresh poems out of old photographs, dealing with the deeply personal topics of adoption, partner loss, and nonbinary identities."
— The Rumpus
— Emily Pérez
— Jami Attenberg, author of "All This Could Be Yours"
— Airea D. Matthews, 2016 Yale Series of Younger Poets winner
— Lee Herrick
"HoodWitch is an incantatory, ecstatic collection brimming with heartbreak and triumph. The speakers in these poems move from child-like curiosity to devastating grief, all while singing a celebratory anthem for blxck wxmenhood. You cannot come away from this book unchanged. This resonant, capacious debut will leave you staggering. Faylita Hicks is just getting started. The world better get ready."
— Laura Wetherington, author of "A Map Predetermined and Chance"