Friday, May 1, 2009

Charles Potts

The Angry Coyote at Spokane Falls

The Angry Coyote at Spokane Falls
AKA Sherman AlexieSpirals a marble tale
Claims in quaint folklore:
An unlaid Coyote created Spokane Falls
With plenty to be mad about
Upending rock with one pissed off paw swipe.

Between folklore and geology
Bedrock basalt and falling water
We know now how
Things got to be this way.
It had nothing to do with
Coyotes or Indians.

Coyote Stretcher

Dad had three or four
Coyote hide stretchers of various sizes,
A cross between a surf board
With the shape of an ironing board,
Fur side in for drying hide turned
Fur side out for later sale and display,
Pointy nose at the tip
Face minus the philosophical eyes,
A Coyote tube with empty throat
From which no call further comes.

Spreaders at the hind end,
Some Coyotes are thicker than others.

Stiffing the Stuffed Coyote

Bobcat seeks coyote
Tracks one down through the want ads
To a suburban mantleStuffed by an
Indian in a moving sale
For a mere $495.
The high price of Coyotes
Brings Bobcat back to earth.

The Streets of the Starving Coyote

On the street of the Starving Coyote
Calle de Netzahualcoyotl in Nahuatalan Spanish
At the Hotel San Marcos in Cuernavaca
I reconsider having my pocket picked
As I stepped off the crowded 100 Zocaló bus
As it stopped on Reforma just before Avenida Juarez
In beautiful downtown Mexico City
By a woman wearing a bright red coat
Judy insisted was a witch.

I banged on the bus and yelled,
Chased a man six blocks up a crowded street.
The crimson coated witch materialized in the intersection
With my wallet in her hand.

I know how to kick and scream.
I hate looking like an easy mark.
You can't embarrass me.
Pick somebody else's pocket.
The Starving Coyote bites back.

The Laughing Coyote

The Laughing Coyote in the sound byte
Makes fun of the Angry Coyote and the Stuffed Coyote.
I'm still taken by the hand of Netzahualcoyotl
The Starving Coyote philosopher king of Texcoco
A full generation before
Cortez and Malinche liberated Mexico from the Aztecs.

I grew up with Coyotes
A desert boy to Mogli's Jungle Book.
Furside in on surfboard stretchers for
Hides turned inside out to cure with their
Toney former noses stiff
In the stuck up air.

They used to sing all night and now
The mashed snow beneath my boots.
I thought their voices came from the stars.

-all poems previously published at Thunder Sandwich

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