Honored to be Coyote

Walking through the reclamation area today – a bit of desert wetlands salvaged from the city of Las Cruces by the City (thank you) I was tickled to see the tracks of a coyote. Following them they ran smoothly into some of my own tracks from earlier and vanished. In fact, it looked as if a coyote had suddenly morphed into a human shape wearing Converse shoes.I would be honored if anyone were to think that I was a coyote shapeshifter. Coyotes are tough, smart, mystical, magical, deities – and survivors. Like Coyote I not only survive, but also thrive in the most remote desert areas or in a small hidden bit of wild in the middle of the city. The coyote in the photo captured and ate a ground squirrel under my watchful eye, in a patch of desert sandwiched between a busy hospital parking lot and a highway service road. He vanished into a little arroyo when he was done. Several people walked by while he gulped down his dinner without ever noticing him. When my husband and I pointed him out to one young man, he simply shrugged and went on. Like the coyote, I am all but invisible to many people – and a nasty, vicious predator to some of those who notice. As a deity, Coyote is well known as a trickster spirit. This is something I can identify with as well, although I consider myself a pixie. It isn’t that we are bad, exactly, but we simply have a different moral standard of what is right and wrong. And it is so much fun to prick self-righteous, judgmental… pricks. Coyote has a darker side. In some Native American tribes the Skinwalker, who can turn himself into Coyote among other animals, is not a good person at all, but someone to be feared and shunned. In modern day New Mexico, or any of the border states, the term human coyote refers to a particular type of person who takes money to sneak people across the border from Mexico. Some of them are more or less honorable I suppose, but many of them are quite willing and capable of abandoning people in the desert after taking their money. But I am Pagan, and pagans understand that every aspect of the universe has both a dark and a light side. If it were not for the night, when would you see the stars shine?I call my husband Crow Boy. Now that we moved further Southwest, I call him Raven Boy. Since I met him he has always attracted the attention of the corbis family. No matter where we live, there is a raven in the tree closest to us and ravens often follow us anywhere we go. Ravens and Coyote have a particular special symbiotic relationship in the wild. In summer, the coyote’s sharp nose leads him unerringly to any nearby carrion or easy food source. The Ravens follow the Coyotes. In the winter, the Raven flies high and wide and with his sharp eyes spots carrion or easy food. The Coyote follows Raven.I like to think my husband and I have a very similar relationship. Those characteristics and abilities that I am lacking in, he is expert at doing. And those talents and abilities I am good at, by and large, are in areas he is lacking. Together we are a team and we are invincible.In my unpublished book A Coyote, A Tanuki, and A Kitsune, the coyote character is a spirit animal, a piece of a deity – unlike the other two who are undoubtedly magical mythical creatures from Japanese lore. Although he is able to take the shape of a human, and has done so for the purposes of finding out what the humans are up to he is truly a spirit animal and his natural form is that of Coyote. And, I admit, he is my favorite. Many a page of dialogue that will probably never be publicly seen are long philosophical discussions between Joe (the coyote) and Smoky (a human bar owner and … maybe a little more). Yes, I would be amused and honored if anyone were to think I was Coyote. But, actually, of course, I’m a pixie.Thanks for your time and blessedbeI am Summer Foovay

Source: Honored to be Coyote


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