natural world (129)

Fox Meets Coyote

Coyote alongside Highway One. I’ve seen him several times. He seems curious about humans. The trickster. I hope people aren’t feeding him.

Fox was the only living man. There was no earth. The water was everywhere.

“What shall I do,” Fox asked himself. He began to sing in order to find out.

“I would like to meet somebody,” he sang to the sky.

Then he met Coyote.

“I thought I was going to meet someone,” Fox said.

“Where are you going?” Coyote asked.

“I been wandering all over trying to find someone.

I was worried there for a while.”

“Well, it’s better for two people to go together … That’s what they always say.”

“Okay. But what will we do?”

“I don’t know.”

“I got it! Let’s try to make the world.”

“And how are we going to do that?” Coyote asked.

“Sing!” said Fox.

–Jaime de Angulo, Indian Tales
(From the first page of Shelter)

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Ohlone Indians of Santa Cruz

Last week I took my two grandsons (ages 5 & 7) to the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History, which they loved. On the wall was this lovely painting depicting what life was like for California Indians before the Europeans arrived. If you are ever in Santa Cruz I highly recommend visiting this unique little museum, which is at 1305 East Cliff Dr.

“Ohlone people were hunters and gatherers who followed this seasonal cycles of the natural world around them — the salmon runs, the maturing of acorns, the ripening of berries and bulbs, the migrations of waterfowl. The abundance of food in this region created a relatively stable society. Some village sites were occupied continuously for thousands of years.”

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Crab Shell on Beach Today (about 3″ wide)

Oh, Great Spirit
  Whose voice I hear in the winds,
And whose breath gives life to all the world,
  hear me, I am small and weak,
I need your strength and wisdom.

Let me walk in beauty and make my eyes ever behold
  the red and purple sunset.
Make my hands respect the things you have
  made and my ears sharp to hear your voice.
Make me wise so that I may understand the things
  you have taught my people.
Let me learn the lessons you have
  hidden in every leaf and rock.…

–Native American prayer, translated by Lakota Sioux Chief Yellow Lark in 1887

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Redwoods Survive Fires

Out pretty deep in woods today. I often see fire-scarred redwoods; maybe they survive fires. Makes sense. It’s been many years since there was a fire in these parts.

I’m heading up to Pt. Arena to visit my friend Louie tomorrow for a few days.

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