Coyote Dances With Stars

Because the Great Mystery Power had given Coyote much of his medicine, Coyote himself grew very powerful and conceited. There was nothing, he believed, that he couldn’t do. He even thought he was more powerful than the Great Mystery, for Coyote was sometimes wise but also a fool. One day long ago, it came into his mind to dance with a star. “I really feel like doing this,” he said. He saw a bright star coming up from behind a mountain, and called out: “Hoh, you star, wait and come down! I want to dance with you.”

The star descended until Coyote could get hold of him, and then soared up into the sky, with Coyote hanging on for dear life. Round and round the sky went the star. Coyote became very tired, and the arm that was holding onto the star grew numb, as if it were coming out of its socket! “Star,” he said, “I believe I’ve done enough dancing for now. I’ll let go and be getting back home.” “No, wait; we’re too high up,” said the star. “Wait until I come lower over the mountain where I picked you up.”

Coyote looked down at the earth. He thought it seemed quite near. “I’m tired, star; I think I’ll leave now; we’re low enough,” he said, and let go.

Coyote had made a bad mistake. He dropped down, down, down. He fell for a full ten winters. He plopped through the earth clouds at last, and when he finally hit ground, he was flattened out like a tanned, stretched deerskin. So he died right there.

Now, the Great Mystery Power had amused himself by giving Coyote several lives. It took Coyote quite a few winters, however, to puff himself up again into his old shape. He had grown quite a bit older in all that time, but he had not grown less foolish. He boasted: “Who besides me could dance with stars, and fall out of the sky for ten long winters, and be flattened out like a deer hide,and live to tell the tale? I am Coyote. I am powerful. I can do anything!”

Coyote was sitting in front of his lodge one night, when from behind the mountain rose a strange kind of star, a very fast one, trailing a long, shining tail. Coyote said to himself: “Look at that fast star; what fun to dance with him!” He called out: “Hoh, strange star with the long tail! Wait for me; come down; let’s dance!”

The strange, fast star shot down, and Coyote grabbed hold. The star whirled off into the vastness of the universe. Again Coyote had made a bad mistake. Looking up from his lodge into the sky, he had had no idea of that star’s real speed. It was the fastest thing in the universe.

Coyote fell back down to earth in little pieces, a bit here and a bit there. But soon the pieces started looking for each other, slowly coming together, forming up into Coyote again.

It took a long time; several winters. At last Coyote was whole again except for his right hand, which was still whirling around in space with the star. Coyote called out: “Great Mystery! I was wrong.!! I’m not as powerful as you. I’m not as powerful as I thought, Have pity on me!”

Then the Great Mystery Power spoke: “Friend Coyote. I have given you four lives. Two you have already wasted foolishly. Better watch out!” “Have pity on me,” wailed Coyote. “Give me back my right hand.” “That’s up to the star with the long tail, my friend. You must have patience. Wait until the star appears to you, rising from behind the mountain again. Then maybe he will shake your hand off.” “How often does this star come over the mountain?”
“Once in a hundred lifetimes,” said the Great Mystery.

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About Green Jean Granny

I believe in and practice positive living with a bit of a barb it seems. I love YARN, music, reading, history, and gemstones. I am passionate about the Earth. I am a true homebody. I've said I was Pagan for years to separate myself from a churchy upbringing and judgmental family that left me outside of its beliefs. I believe it's our responsibility to tend and protect the Earth. I basically do my thing in a (not so) quiet, amused way. I believe in the power of my own hands, the energy of combined prayer, and caring for the earth. I attend a nondenominational Christian Church. I have 6 kids, all home-born and successfully breastfed. The oldest 5 are grown. The youngest is attending Community College and living at home. I'm the oldest of 9, daughter of a missionary mother who lives in The Republic of Congo, married to the son of a preacher, with 3 spoiled dogs and and an add on (my daughter's pit bull lives here for a bit while she hikes the Appalachian Trail. Right now, there is small balance after yrs of unemployment. My disability was approved due to degenerative disc disease and fibromyalgia. I believe we owe it to ourselves to protect our mental health. It's precious and the one thing we can control. I dislike my own housework and I talk too much. I bought a house in North Carolina and after trying to get my husband here for 6 months, he had a stroke. I'm a two-time caregiver. Steve's got hemiparesis and diabetes and is learning to walk and trying to use his right side again. It's slow going. Our 10 kitties were rehomed by rescue after his stroke.
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