Coyote   1 comment

My first exposure to the Gaia Hypothesis was in the 1980s when I saw a great little film describing the earth as a single organism. The name Gaia comes from a Greek goddess of the same name.  The earth, based on our human experience, occult theory and scientific fact is a living entity. Humans were depicted in the film as the central nervous system, the rivers the bloodstream and the tropical rainforests the lungs, other systems equate with other organs, and all work together to make a whole. Believe the hypothesis or not, it is a great image that promotes the interdependence of human, plant, and animal and their need for each other if a healthy earth is to continue.

The Gaia Hypothesis has now matured into theory of the Earth as a self-regulating living system “comprised of physical, chemical, biological, and human components.” James Lovelock originated the hypothesis, and he has been rewarded with numerous awards for his now recognized theory.

Maybe everything we need to know is not what comes from kindergarten, but from a colony of ants. These hard workers show us everything from organizational skills to traffic flow. They use express lanes that lie on the outer main trail, so when not carrying food they can speed along while the main trail is the central food lane. If their anthill is destroyed they create another one, and if is it is destroyed again; they can rebuild it faster the second time. They learn from experience. This is a skill that man has yet to perfect at least in historical terms.

When wolves were removed from Wyoming and the deer lost their predators, more deer ate tree bark undisturbed at river’s edge. They ate so much bark off of the trees that the trees died and fell into the river pulling part of the bank in with them, which disrupted the fish causing death and destruction, and lost meals for hungry fishermen and women.

Everything has a place, a part in this grand scheme of living together. Salute the maggot that takes care of rot. Salute the elephants that show their grief at loss of fellow elephants and return to visit bone yards/gravesites of dead loved ones.  Who grieved first, animal or man?

Native American legend says that the Coyote once roamed the prairies as a man.

From an essay by David Levi Stauss: “Native American Coyote tales speak of a time long ago “when animals were people” and everyone communicated with each other. Though there are many different kinds of Coyote tales, varying from place to place and people to people, they flow from a common, ancient source and represent “one of man’s earliest attempts to make articulate the movement of the Spirit.”  The Coyote of the Coyote tales is primarily a transformer, an agent of change bringing order to chaos and chaos to order. He is “the spirit of disorder, the enemy of boundaries.” In much of Western North America he fills the role of Culture Hero and Trickster, found in virtually all-traditional societies. He is an American Zeus, Prometheus, Orpheus, and Hermes all rolled into one: mating to create the human race, inventing death, stealing fire to give to humans, shapeshifter, androgyne, messenger and guide to the Underworld. In whatever guise, Coyote makes things happen.”

Coyotes also have a sense of humor. Strauss notes this by the well-known propensity of experienced coyotes to dig up traps, turn them over, and urinate or defecate on them?

Strauss continues his essay describing man’s war on the coyote and the result: “The coyote is the most adaptable and successful North American mammal besides Homo sapiens. Favoring prairie, basin, and bajada, the coyote has recently extended its range from the forests of Maine to the city parks of Los Angeles, from Alaska to the mountains of Guatemala, and it has done this in the face of one of the most concerted attempts ever made to wipe out an entire species. Weapons in the war against coyotes have included poisons such as strychnine and thallium sulfate, leg hold traps, cyanide “coyote-getters” designed to explode into the coyote’s mouth, snares, den-hunting to destroy pups, aerial hunting from planes and helicopters, “dying rabbit” calls to guns, sterilization baits, sight-running hounds, toxic collars on sheep, and “Compound 1080” (sodium monofloroacetate), hailed as “the best, most species specific, most foolproof predator poison ever developed by man.”  All over the West, coyotes are hunted with four-wheel-drive jeeps, CB radios and high-powered rifles with scopes. There has been a bounty on coyote scalps since 1825, even though no state or province has ever reduced any predator animal population through the bounty system. Through the Predator & Rodent Control Branch of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (sister agency of the Bureau of Indian Affairs) and other agencies, the U.S. Government has poured millions of tax dollars into coyote eradication efforts since Congress first appropriated money for it in 1914. Charles L. Cadieux compared the government’s war on coyotes to another debacle: Many people feel that the Vietnamese mistake was the first war that the United States didn’t win. That isn’t true. For forty-five years, Uncle Sam has fought a war against coyotes…and lost! In the years between 1937 and 1981, minions of the Fish & Wildlife Service scalped 3, 612, 220 coyotes. The ears with a connecting strip of skin were sent to a central tallying point as proof of their ‘body count.’ [Cadieux estimates this figure should actually be doubled to include the number of unverified, unrecorded kills due to Compound 1080 poisoning. If my calculations are reasonable, coyotes suffered six million casualties in this war with Uncle Sam. Yet, we would have to admit that the coyotes have won the war.”

Find fault with all the bleeding heart liberals out there, but imagine the time and money wasted on killing people and animals because we agree to decide on an enemy, demonize them, use our time, and chemicals that harm land, water, fetuses, cause cancer etc, and waste resources, in the effort to eliminate our “enemies” when in truth they are our mirror reflections.


Posted August 15, 2010 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Essays

One response to “Coyote

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  1. wonderful, to quote Suella
    Ants and Coyotes. Pogo “We have met the enemy, and he is us” If I wrote, I might say this. Barbara Kingsolver my other favorite author.


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