Burning heads of Gimmesave

Custodians of the Land: The Burning Heads of Gimmesave

Within the lush embrace of Asaro’s landscapes, a tale of ancestral ingenuity and cultural heritage unfolds—the Burning Heads of Gimmesave. This extraordinary tradition, closely intertwined with the Mudmen of Asaro, offers a glimpse into the resourceful methods employed by the Gimmesave tribe to safeguard their crops and establish a profound connection with the land. As the former banana plantations transformed into expansive coffee farms, the tradition metamorphosed, allowing modern visitors to witness a remarkable chapter of history resurface in a new and captivating form.

Ancient Guardianship:

In an era long before coffee plants graced the earth, the fertile lands of Asaro were adorned with flourishing banana plantations. For the ancestors of the Gimmesave tribe, these plantations represented sustenance and prosperity. Yet, the harmony was threatened by relentless birds and immense bats that descended upon the ripening fruit, putting the community’s sustenance at risk.

In response, the ingenious ancestors of Gimmesave adorned themselves with coats of white mud and black clay, creating a striking contrast that mimicked the feathers of the birds. They fashioned headpieces from banana stumps and moss, which they set ablaze. As night fell, the burning headpieces illuminated the darkness, creating a fearsome spectacle that sent the birds and bats fleeing.

An Evolving Tradition:

The evolution of the Burning Heads of Gimmesave reflects a profound shift from agricultural necessity to cultural treasure. Today, the tradition has transformed into a captivating display for curious visitors—a living testament to history’s tenacity, creativity, and reverence for the land. It serves as a portal to the past, where ancestral guardians patrolled the plantations with flaming crowns, etching their courage and resourcefulness into the very fabric of the region.

The Spirit of Continuity:

The metamorphosis of this ancient practice into a contemporary showcase underscores the Gimmesave tribe’s commitment to preserving their heritage amidst changing times. It symbolizes the act of cherishing the past while embracing the future—a balance between ancestral wisdom and the march of modernity. Through the reenactment, the Burning Heads of Gimmesave cease to be historical artifacts; they become living conduits that bridge time, inviting us to appreciate the legacy that binds generations.

A Connection Through the Flames:

As travelers bear witness to the spectacle of the Burning Heads, they step into a realm where the veil between reality and the ethereal is tantalizingly thin. The flickering flames and the painted bodies evoke a communion with ancestral spirits, as if the past and present converge in a dance of light and shadows. This connection transcends the tangible, inviting participants to partake in a tradition that has persevered through epochs.

Preserving Stories, Igniting Bonds:

The narrative of the Burning Heads of Gimmesave serves as a poignant reminder that beneath the surface of the ordinary lies a treasure trove of narratives. By sharing this tradition with the world, the Gimmesave tribe does more than recount their history—they ignite conversations, forge connections, and kindle an appreciation for the interwoven tapestry of human culture.


The saga of the Burning Heads of Gimmesave illuminates the ancestral spirit’s triumph over adversity. What began as a means to protect precious banana crops has evolved into an emblem of cultural resilience. In witnessing the reenactment, we experience a unique fusion of past and present, as the flames that once guarded the plantations now kindle connections between generations and cultures. This tale reverberates with the power of traditions to transcend time, inviting us all to become custodians of the stories that shape our shared human experience.