Coyote

Coyote

I forget that you are there
Coyote, you sly one
in your canine cleverness.
You the trickster of ancient stories
who spread the stars with your tail—
You fool me.
I’m distracted by
the bumbling possum,
the facile raccoon,
the leggy beauty of the flighty doe,
or even the lumbering bear who fears nothing, clawing the trunks of great trees
and feasting on seedy berries and fish.
I never see
you Coyote,
and barely notice your traces of
muddy prints and bleached bones.
Yes, I forget. I walk, my dogs run ahead;
blissful they are, happy to find the bones you leave, happy to sniff your lingering presence. And me, I walk unaware, until
at night
late with no moon
your howls with unearthly overtones
fill the forest and
my primal human hair
rises up on my neck
and I remember
that you stalk the fawn and
the grouse and
the pet and possibly
even me.
I think in your howls I hear
the reminder that life is
moment to moment,
full of peril;
and safety a dangerous illusion
born of chosen ignorance
so that one can enjoy
a walk. Patricia Thrushart
http://www.thewatershedjournal.org/

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