Who, or what, is Yo Mama?!

Did I mention, I have a thing for dirt?

I love working with natural materials. For the past 25 years I have been teaching people how to build homes with sticks, stone, straw and my favorite ingredient…dirt!

In the winter of 2006 after a month long visit to Bali I decided to clear out some toxic chemicals from our shed, like rusty cans of toluene and stuck cans of spray paint. As I headed for the garbage it hit me, “This isn’t any different than capping the Atlas Tailings in place!”

The Atlas Tailings is a 130 acre, 16 million ton pile of radioactive dirt sitting along the banks of the Colorado River just north of my home in Moab, Utah. This pile of toxic dirt has been sitting there since the 1950s uranium boom. In test trials caged fish lowered into the river along side the bank where the tailings sit, would die within 30 seconds.

The controversy over what to do with the pile had been raging for decades. The day I was boxing up the toxic stuff from my shed, I discovered that the federal government had made the decision to cap the tailings in place by piling more dirt on top of the pile. This decision left me heart sickened. I returned the box of chemicals back to the shed. I retreated to the sofa. I had just closed my eyes when a powerful female voice shook me to my core, “Call council for me! I got something to say!”


“I said, get off that couch and call council for me, I got something to say!”

I looked around. I was alone. “Who are you?”

“I’m Yo Mama! And quit calling me…the pile!”

I was so shaken by her presence that I followed up on her request and invited everyone I could think of that might be open to a meeting with a mound of hot tempered dirt. Four women committed to come!

Needless to say, the outcome of our “Council Meeting” with Yo Mama surprised us!

Yo Mama has continued to visit me sharing her fierce love for “all you outrageous, courageous nut cases!”  from her geo-logic perspective.

I decided to share her prescriptions for feeling good as a theatrical experience. Honestly, she was driving me crazy, murmuring in my ear at 4 am, telling jokes and ranting as I strolled in the desert, rattling my cultivated social and environmental beliefs…

If I did not share Yo Mama she would haunt me to my grave! Hence the creation of YO MAMA ~ UN-CANNED!

This play honors The Great Mother through her stories, humor, songs, dances and big-ass unconditional love. Yo Mama is a Galactic Clown, an Improvaho Warrior and a cosmic wise ass. She makes me happy. She is also a snazzy dresser!

Forget politics, environmental crisis and social injustice!

Yo Mama is here to remind us who’s really in charge, the source of infinite power and how to navigate space without a puffy suit! Written and Performed by Kaki Hunter with musical accompaniment by the Four Elements


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