The Knackered Noun

Sighting the Trickster

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A coyote sighting seems like a good reason to revive this dormant blog.

I was out for an evening walk in one of the valley neighborhoods just downslope from Mulholland Drive.  And walking up a windy residential road, there it was: A coyote (you can kinda see it there in the fuzzy picture), standing under a streetlight. Or perhaps we’ll call it a “lamp,” since it was technically in someone’s front yard.

I hadn’t seen a coyote on a walk in a long time — not since I was out on the trails some months ago,  west of the house I finally moved from last fall.

Those coyotes came at a time where change was starting to roil around me — losses, lucky breaks, narrow escapes.

What might a trickster sighting bring this time?

We will eventually see. But given that coming across a wild animal suddenly lurches you into a wakefulness, a present-ness (that later you wished you had for other moments in your life), all I could do is look. For a very long time.

It stood, sniffed the air, then started to… bark. The barking turned into a series of yelps. No other coyotes responded, but the neighborhood dogs got suddenly excitable.

The coyot’ turned and started to saunter up the hill, then stopped again to yelp, and look in my direction.

Finally, a lost pizza man wandered up behind me, holding an insulated bag of delayed food for one of the hard-to-decipher addresses. He asked me if I knew where a particular house was, but being a wanderer in the neighborhood myself, I didn’t.

When I turned back, the coyote was gone.

Walking  back to my parked car, I heard yips all the way down the hill.

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