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|Name:||Coyote || Chance Abernathy|
"In Chelan myths, Coyote belongs to the animal people but he is at the same time "a power just like the Creator, the head of all the creatures". Yet his being 'just like the Creator' does not really mean being 'the Creator': it is not seldom that Coyote-Just-Like-Creator is subject to the Creator, Great Chief Above, who can punish him, send him away, take powers away from him, etc. In the Pacific Northwest tradition, Coyote is mostly mentioned as a messenger, or minor power, "Coyote was sent to the camp of the chief of the Cold Wind tribe to deliver a challenge; Coyote traveled around to tell all the people in both tribes about the contest." As such, Coyote "was cruelly treated, and his work was never done."
As the culture hero, Coyote appears in various mythic traditions, but generally with the same magical powers of transformation, resurrection, and then Coyote's "medicine". He is engaged in changing the ways of rivers, standing of mountains, creating new landscapes and getting sacred things for people. Of mention is the tradition of Coyote fighting against monsters. According to Wasco tradition, Coyote was the hero to fight and kill Thunderbird, the killer of people, but he could do that not because of his personal power, but due to the help of the Spirit Chief; Coyote was trying his best, he was fighting hard, and he had to have fasted ten days before the fight, so advised by Spirit Chief. In many Wasco myths, Coyote rivals the Raven (Crow) about the same ordeal: in some stories, Multnomah Falls came to be by Coyote's efforts; in others, it is done by Raven.
More often than not Coyote is a trickster, but he is always different. In some stories, he is a noble trickster, "Coyote takes water from the Frog people... because it is not right that one people have all the water." In others, he is mean, "Coyote determined to bring harm to Duck. He took Duck's wife and children, whom he treated badly."
...Some say it was Coyote who brought man fire for the first time when he tricked the Wise Ones. Others say Coyote stole the stars from the moon. But of course, those are all legends, long dead and gone with the people that tell them. Coyote was an archetype--a method of storytelling. Right?
Well, that's what a Trickster would have you believe.
[disclaimer: both muse and mun are over 18, i am not an embodiment of the idea of Coyote, i am not shane west. journal is likely to contain adult concepts]