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Coyote Makes the Moon

Coyote Makes the Moon

Ratings: (0)|Views: 147 |Likes:
Published by Sean Miner
After having made the World, Coyote gets the help of Raven in making the Moon.

Some illustrations are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/45389572@N03/sets/72157622840275731/
After having made the World, Coyote gets the help of Raven in making the Moon.

Some illustrations are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/45389572@N03/sets/72157622840275731/

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Published by: Sean Miner on Dec 04, 2009
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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06/02/2014

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As you can see when you look up at night (or in the day, if the Sun'snot too bright, at least half the time), we have one big, bright Moon.But it wasn't always that way. There was a short time when we had many,many moons, and a time before that when we had no Moon at all. Untilone night when Coyote said, "I'm tired of not having any light atnight. I can't see a damned thing." (Which was a lie, because Coyotecan see in the dark better than anyone except maybe Cat or Owl. ButCoyote's full of crap, and he knows it.So he set out to get someone to help him.He tried Wolf. "Aren't you tired of not being able to see anything atnight?" he asked.Wolf answered, "I have my ears, and my nose. Why don’t you use what youhave for a change, instead of looking for the easy way out?"Coyote huffed, "Why do I even ask you this stuff?"He went on until he heard Mole, digging away under the soil. "Mole!" hebarked. "Just the one I'm looking for!" he said as Mole came up inanswer. "Hey, aren't you tired of only having Sun in the daytime?Mole blinked. "What's Sun?" he asked.Coyote snorted, "Forget about your blind ass."After awhile he came upon Cat, hunting in the brush. "Cat!" he yipped."Just the cat for me! Hey, aren't you tired of not having any light atnight?"Cat -- who he'd interrupted just as he was about to pounce on somethingsoft and furry -- licked himself and, eventually, answered, simply,"Why would I?"Coyote sniffed, "So you can see how bad smug looks on you. Littlemouse-breath bastard."Finally, Coyote came upon Raven. Of everyone in the world, Ravenunderstands Coyote best, as he's a trickster too, though he acts lesscrazy about it."Ray-VAHN!" Coyote crowed. "I've been looking all over for you! I beenthinking, we gotta pool talents. Aren't you sick of not having anylight at night?""You know," Raven answered, "I
am
getting sick of bumping into clouds."Now, you can’t bump into a cloud, so one's sure what he meant. He wasprobably being poetic. Back then, Raven was the most poetic of all thespirits. He was also the most colorful of all the birds. He hadfeathers in reds, blues, yellows, greens, and colors nobody evenremembers today because Raven's the only one who ever had them. And hewore them long, so that when he flew his tail reached halfway acrossthe sky.
 
"So," he continued, "part of me is saying I shouldn't have anything todo with your plans, but part is saying that a little light at nightmight be worth it.""Second thoughts are always best," Coyote laughed. "So here's all wehave to do. You know the Sun?""It's a celestial body of which I'm aware, yes," Raven answered(casually inventing irony)."Right," said Coyote, not noticing. "Well, we just need a little pieceof it, right? To light up things a little at night.""And how so you plan to get that?" Raven asked."Well," said Coyote, "I don't. I can’t fly, can I? That's where youcome in.""You want me to fly into the Sun?" Raven asked. "Big ball of fire thatbakes the earth every morning? Eat scat."Coyote looked hurt. "Hey! I've got a plan, you know! How do you knowthe Sun's so bad up close? Look, in the morning, go do a fly-around andsee how things are. Maybe it's safer than you think. Just check it out,is all."Raven could see no harm in this. "Alright. I'll check it out in themorning."When morning came, Raven flew up to the Sun, just as it crested thehorizon. It was fresh out of the sea, and Raven found that, whilepretty warm, he should be clever enough to be able to snatch a piecewithout harm. He flew back and reported to Coyote."Great!" said Coyote. "But we don't want it just yet. It's all reddishnow. We want to wait until it's bright white! So let's let it rise abit.So a bit later, Raven again climbed into the sky to snatch a piece ofthe Sun. But now, he found, the Sun was too hot for him. He circledaround it and flew back to tell Coyote that the plan was off."Well, look here," Coyote said with his best helpful smile, "I got anidea. See that stream? Go in there and splash around and get allsoaked.""That's a river." said Raven. "And it's ice-cold! It's straight out ofthe coldest chambers of the earth's heart!"(Told you. Poetic.)"Exactly!" Coyote grinned. "You'll be all cold and wet and you won'tget burned!"
 
This made sense to Raven, though he noted that he was the one gettingcold and wet and Coyote was the one looking on and grinning. So hesplashed in and let the water soak into his feathers and over his skin."Th-th-this is
f-f-f-reezing!"
he cried as the water sucked the heatfrom his bones."That's the point!" Coyote said, encouragingly. "And don't botherchattering like that, you have no teeth!"Well, Raven eagerly got out of the water and started to fly -- slowly,because the water made him heavy. By the time he neared the Sun, it wasa little after noon, when the Sun was at hottest, and the water wasstarting to warm and dry. He was cooler than he'd been before, though,so, having come so far already, he made his dive at the Sun.He snatched a small piece in his beak, but found that its touch waseven hotter than he'd expected. He quickly shifted it to one claw, andthen the other. He found himself in midair, bouncing it from one partof his body to another -- beak to foot to foot to wing to wing, off hishead, his breast, his tail, just to keep if from getting too hot. Eachtime he batted the piece of Sun, another little piece flew off acrossthe sky, and sparks flew over his feathers.It was a long way down from the Sun, and before he was halfway to theground the water had dried up and half the bit of Sun had been batteredaway. As the real Sun was beginning to set, the sparks were starting tocatch in his glorious feathers. His lengthy plumes charred andshriveled, his breast blackened, his beak scorches as it tried to holdthe dwindling piece of Sun. At last, his feathers were almost burnedaway, and he plummeted like a falling black star deep into the snow ofa mountaintop, where the snow against his burning feathers hissed intoclouds of steam that blotted out the sky.Coyote -- who'd for some reason been waiting on the mountain whereRaven fell -- called down the hole in the snow, "Hey! Nice work! Comeon up and take a look!"The curses Raven swore while climbing up the icy tunnel wriggled awaydown the mountain, to grow into monsters for later stories (Coyotewatched these with amusement). At last Raven cleared the hole and stoodbefore Coyote. "The new look is good on you," Coyote promised. "Colorsare everywhere. Almost nobody can pull off all black."Indeed, Raven was burned completely black from beak to cloaws. He knewthe way these things worked, and knew that when the feathers regrew,they would grow in black and stunted.Just then, the clouds of steam parted, and in seeing the results of hiswork, Raven lost the thought of cursing Coyote with acidic mange. Thenight sky was lit buy a dozen burning moons, which together lit theworld almost as bright as daylight."Well, I'm impressed," Coyote said, so sincerely that Raven gave goododds that it was actually true. "Let's go play!"

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