Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Coyote Eyes

It started with coyote song. I had cleaned up the kitchen and turned off the music just in time to step out into the night and hear the song of a lone coyote down near the creek. It was wild, beautiful music for a cold, clear night, and it deeply stirred my imagination.

The next night, as he pulled into the driveway, my son Joshua spotted a coyote at the far end of the yard. I was delighted that he quietly entered the house and took me with him out onto the back porch to see what we could see. Picking out where he thought it would be, Joshua shined his flashlight into the woods.

Glowing eyes stared back at us. A moment later we confirmed another set of eyes. There were at least two of them, just inside the woods, not a hundred feet away. 

I shivered in the cold damp night air. My breath became fog in the flashlight's beam, momentarily obscuring my vision. There was talk that it would snow during the night, and it certainly felt like it. 

And there we stood, eyes looking at eyes, the four of us, watching each other in the night. I'm sure we each wondered what the others were thinking. On both sides there was caution, but no fear—each simply waiting to see what the other would do.

Our curiosity was satisfied before the coyotes', and we turned off the intrusive flashlight and returned to the light and comfort  of our house. The coyotes no doubt relaxed and continued the patrol of their territory, their home. 

Alert with coyote thoughts,
silently they stalk the shadows,
cautious, curious, and hopeful.

Sleepy and contemplative,
I turn to my own bed, 
cautious, curious, and hopeful. 

I fell asleep wrapped in coyote thoughts, wondering if it would in fact snow.

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