Saturday, October 29, 2016

coyote makes the seasons

in the beginning, there were no seasons, and the world was the same every day. one day, coyote grew tired of this, and he created summer and winter. as time passed, summer and winter grew to love each other. they wished to be with each other, but had no place to meet. they went to coyote and told him these things. and so coyote built them a lodge where they could be together. he built it in the most beautiful place he knew, far from everything else. then coyote told them what he’d done, and they were happy.

a few days later, coyote saw summer. “coyote, you must help me and winter,” said summer. “we have tried to find the lodge you have built for us, but it is so well hidden that we cannot find our way.” she told coyote “you must make us a path.” coyote said he would. he asked summer how the path should be. “it should be as winter’s way is,” summer answered. “it should be still, and warm, and golden, and full of deep thoughts and memories. such a path will remind me of winter, and i will not lose my way.” “i will do it,” said coyote, and he went and made such a path.

time passed. then one day, coyote saw winter. “coyote,” said winter, “you must help me. i have tried to follow the path you have made to the lodge, but i keep getting lost. you must change the path, and make it as summer’s way is. it must be fresh, and bright, and green, and carefree and full of laughter. a path like this will remind me of summer, and i will not get lost.” “very well, i will make the path this way,” said coyote.

when coyote was by himself, he thought “i cannot make just one path to the lodge that will please these two.” and so coyote made a new path as winter had described. these two paths were fall and spring. “now each has its own way to find the lodge and each other,” said coyote, and summer and winter were pleased.

- by numb
in appreciation of 'Giving Birth to Thunder: Sleeping With His Daughter'
Native American 'coyote' stories collected by Barry Lopez


Retyped from its dot-matrix original found in a pocket
of an old handbag of mine. It was so nice I just had to
illustrate its essence. Hope you like it too.



Lindsay Byrnes said...

Hi Susan,
A wonderful picture to go with the endearing legend. b/wishes

Tom said...

Truly lovely. So I have coyote to thank for this lovely autumn.

Ol'Buzzard said...

Love the art work and the story.
the Ol'Buzzard

susan said...

Glad you enjoyed it, Lindsay.
All the best

susan said...

Thanks, Tom. May Coyote always bring you the loveliest seasons.

susan said...

The story definitely inspired the picture, OB.
I'm happy you liked them both.

marja-leena said...

A beautiful work and story, Susan!

susan said...

I'm so happy you came by to see it, Marja-Leena.

Should Fish More said...

Huh. I always thought of Coyote as trickster, the mischief maker. Navajo mythology mainly.
Wonderful watercolor as always, young lady.

susan said...

You're right of course, Mike, but his legends go further than the Navajo. While often often perceived as a trickster there's a theory which suggests that Coyote and Crow obtained mythic status because they are mediator animals between life and death.

I'm delighted you like the picture - first time I've been inspired to paint in months.

MRMacrum said...

Nice, very nice. We should all pay more attention to the stories from our past. And as usual, your artwork helps bring the words to life. Excellent

Sean Jeating said...

How cometh I feel reminded of an aphorism from Lichtenberg's pen: 'The first American who discovered Columbus made a terrible discovery.'

L'Adelaide said...

Such a beautiful painting, Susan. Is it new or one you've been keeping for awhile. ;) I just did a coyote painting myself. What does that mean?! I'm calling my newest paintings a "wildlife series". Aren't I smart? hahahah.[ Laughs hysterically] Have you been following our latest Native American wild west foray complete with buffalo? Disgusting. I am beginning to think the good old USA is sinking faster than you know what.

ah well, my dear. I must run. Cannot be on here for long without it becoming a real pain. Glad to see you painting again. :) one of the joys of this dark time of year!

susan said...

Many thanks for your kind words, MRM. Truth can inspire and we should listen.

susan said...

I hadn't heard that one before, Sean, but it's a very true statement. The original inhabitants had no way to understand the invaders.

susan said...

Yes, it's very new, my friend - finished on Saturday afternoon a few days after I found the story. I'll look forward to seeing your coyote painting when I come by again.

Yes, we've been following the shocking events in ND. The idea of the police and state governments being dictated to by an oil company is revolting - never mind the heavies the company has been using to disrupt the protest.

It's good to see you too. I'll be by again soon and will hope we'll both keep painting.

L'Adelaide said...

I too find the events in SD absolutely disgusting as well as deeply disturbing. NA have every right to make this PEACEFUL DEMAND to leave their land alone, especially given their beliefs, their rights to their ancestry and their sacred grounds. It is appalling. I haven't figured out what I can do about it other than paint a jack rabbit that manifested as a jackrabbit wearing feathers-odd, I do realize. I am very disheartened by many things happening in both my own world and the larger one. I have to regather myself often back to where I belong and sit with me. Holding my hand, so to speak. Stay well and at peace, dear heart.

susan said...

If there's any good news to this at all, Linda, it's that lots of people are supporting the protesters and the UN has sent observers to ND. We know that the facts are on the side of the Protectors, and observers make it clear to the sheriff and the Governor that the facts will be known and that they will be held accountable.

Keep up your hopes, sweet friend. They're not wasted.