“Coyote ReMixed” Exerpt two

chapter: Editors Try To Explain

At a table in the small library branch at the El-Con Mall in Tuscon, Bundacena Brattleboro was lecturing Helen Pinkorth and Leslie Tureen about mythical tricksters. All three were trying to find the right tone for a book introduction for the Calliope Press edition of Coyote ReMixed . “Indigenous people are concerned with deception, all kinds, but especially with the constant lies of the trickster” Bundacena said in her soft Spanish accent.  Leslie Tureen put down his scalding coffee and answered, “You can’t just say that without naming the trickster and setting the circumstances. Do you mean Crow or Mountain Lion?” “No, Coyote, the most pernicious and harmful. He’s the – ” Bundacena was cut off. “I think, started Helen, shuffling her papers and waving her hand dramatically, “that we need to begin with the deliberate deceptions practiced, not the unseen face underneath, but -”  “Stop! You’re both clueless academic hacks, trying to disguise your lost ramblings with big words and inappropriate concepts, like semantic deconstruction. I want to see a simple summary of what -”  “We need to begin with the Campa people, for whom all demons are thin, drab, and have a false appearance, like a leaf, and then -”  “Get confused and lost before retreating into an awkward silence. Yeah, yeah, this is what I mean”, Leslie sighed. “This book is about Coyote, not Legba or the Lady of the Lake. No background is -”  “You arrogant Lush. How dare you dismiss us from your high male bastion”. Bundacena curdled the milk in his coffee with her acidic rejoinder. “We are the ones who bring perspective to this childish menage of twaddle”.  “You bring in word-counts only. And your friend Helen Keller here is blind to the subtle -”  CRASH! Helen brought a 1300-page dictionary down onLeslie’s head. When Bundacena saw that, she wrestled Leslie to the floor, pinning his arms by his side. “You bastard (punch), you rude (slap) little dingo (poke). You had to pull us down (hit) to your level (punch), didn’t you (slap)? Helen dropped the book on Leslie’s crotch. When he jack-knifed up, Bundacena punched him on the nose and he fell back down, “BLUUH AOOUUUH”  “Hey, let me see that dictionary for a minute. I wonder if we should use the word “immoral” for Coyote, instead of “amoral”?  “Depends on the context. What would the sentence be?”  The two editors were able to pound out a decent introduction in 25 minutes. This is it. ” As the Traditional Trickster of Native Lore, Coyote gets tricked more than he tricks. These stories, set in the present of an industrial urban machine, show how much more precious Coyote is, as he tries to navigate the clutter of tools and gods, fools and aliens, and jewels and cars”  “Stop there, that’s good enough. We’re out of space, so we’ll just have to use that -”  Helen shrugged.

“Coyote Remixed” Exerpt One

chapter exerpt:  My God Is A Jealous Trickster

Tricksters are among the most entertaining characters in mythology. They delight in breaking rules, boasting and playing tricks on animals, humans and gods. Most Tricksters are shape-changers who can take any form, although they often appear as animals. Tricksters have well-defined roles, operating outside the framework of right and wrong; they refuse to recognize the rules of society. Their characters are often childish, greedy, lustful and even nasty, although Tricksters can also be friendly, helpful, clever and wise. Sometimes they appear to be clownish or clumsy, but they always possess amazing powers of survival. A Trickster may act as a messenger between the human and divine world. Hermes, the messenger of the gods in Greek mythology, was the god of travelers and trade, but also of thieves and deceit.

Some scholars have suggested that the Trickster is one of the most ancient figures in mythology. Chaotic and disorderly, this character acts out many human urges and desires that people living in communities must learn to control to maintain social order. Trickster myths, especially those in which the Trickster’s deeds backfire against him in some way, may have developed to teach a moral lesson about the penalties of misbehavior. Tales in which the Trickster is a small but clever animal, like Coyote, that emerges victorious, teach a different lesson: showing how a seemingly powerless creature can triumph over a mighty one.

 

About “Coyote Remixed”

“Coyote Remixed” just published. Words by Yulalona Lopez, verbilator. Pictures by Jerry Allison, illustrator. I was fortunate to meet the mysterious personage of Yulalona Lopez, an individual equally touched, possessed, and sometimes deranged by the spirit of Coyote. And equally intent on helping Coyote with his desire to explore the modern world. We decided to collaborate and “Coyote Remixed” is the result. It is funny, satirical, sometimes philosophical and/or archeological, and wildly original…                            I will be posting excerpts soon.

Available now from Amazon, or order from your favorite bookseller.