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Woodblock Store 3


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Name of Print - Coyote

The Great Spirit gathered all the Animal People together to tell them that a change was  coming, that New People (Native Americans) would be coming to the earth to live. Since not all the animals had names, the Great Spirit decreed that they should all come to his lodge at the next sunrise to receive their new names. Coyote (Sin-Ka-Lip) did not like his name, which meant "imitator." However, it suited him well because he was always imitating others and pretending to know everything that others knew. He boasted to his brother, Fox, that he would be the first one at the lodge of the Great Spirit the next morning, for he wanted one of the three most revered animal names: Grizzly Bear, ruler of the four footed people; Eagle, ruler of the birds; or Salmon, ruler of all the fish. Coyote vowed to stay awake all night and braced his eyelids with two small sticks. In spite of his vow, he fell asleep by the fire and woke when the sun was high in the sky. When he reached the Great Spirit lodge, all the names except his own (which none of the other animals wanted) were taken. Coyote had to keep his name. The heart of the Great Spirit was touched at Sin-ka-lip's despair. To help the New People, the Great Spirit gave Coyote the chore of conquering the people-devouring creatures, making him a chief after all. The New People got their slightly slanted eyes from Coyote, whose eyes remained slanted from the night he sat by the fire with them propped open.

From Coyote Stories
by Mourning Dove (Humishuma)
University of Nebraska Press, 1990


Price: $150.00 | Print Size 18.5"x 19.5" |







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Name of Print - Coyote and Buffalo

The tribes of the Northwest always had to cross the Rockies to hunt the buffalo. The fault was Coyote's. When he was traveling in the buffalo country east of the Rockies, he came upon a skull of Buffalo Bull, his long time enemy. To revenge himself, he picked up the skull, threw it in the air, spat on it, and threw dust in the eye-sockets. To his surprise, his old enemy came to life and chased him furiously. Coyote thought he was lost; but Squa-stenk (the power from above) helped him to escape. To appease Buffalo Bull, Coyote made him a new pair of horns. The new horns so pleased Buffalo Bull that he forgave Coyote and offered him a young cow, with the warning that he must never kill her. He taught coyote to slice the cow's fat and heal the wound with ashes. At first Coyote obeyed Buffalo Bull's order, but he grew hungry for the sweet marrow bones and other good parts of the cow. Thinking Buffalo Bull would never know, he killed the calf, but the crows and magpies thwarted him from eating his fill. When he returned to Buffalo Bull to ask for another cow, he found his calf had returned to life. Of course, she would not go with him, nor would Buffalo Bull give him another cow. That is why there never have been any buffalo along the Swah-netk-qhu (Columbia River).

From Coyote Stories
by Mourning Dove (Humishuma)
University of Nebraska Press, 1990

Price: $150.00 | Print Size 17.5"x 21" |







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Name of Print - Coyote, Fox and Whale

Fox had a beautiful wife whom he loved dearly, but she had come under the spell of the Spirit of the Water – Whale – and would sit on the banks of the Swahnetk'qhu (the Columbia River) and sing love songs to the water, hoping Whale would appear and make love to her. One day Fox, returning from the hunt, came upon his wife at the river's edge. Fox watched as she sang her song of love, and saw the Spirit of the Water appear and make love to his wife. Heavy of heart, Fox did not confront his wife. When he and his brother Coyote returned from the hunt another day, she was gone. Later a canoe with Water Maidens appeared to steal food for Fox's wife (who could not digest the water food). Fox and Coyote captured them and learned that in order to find the stolen wife they must go over the "Big Falls" (Kettle Falls on the Columbia River in Washington State) and under the water. After killing the maidens, Fox and Coyote put on the robes to disguise themselves and set off to recapture Fox's wife. Carrying packs of dried meet and berries, and riding in the magical canoe of the water maidens, they went over the Big Falls, found the great encampment of the Water People and made their way to the lodge of their chief, the Whale. After delivering their goods, they kept their disguises in place until all were asleep. Then Fox sneaked up to Whale and cut off the monster's head as Coyote carried off Fox's wife. The noise awoke the Water People, but Fox and Coyote beat a hasty retreat, shooting up to the river's surface below the falls and throwing the head of the Whale toward the setting sun. "In the Big Salt Water shall Whale stay," said Fox. "No longer shall he live in the smaller waters . . .to lure wives from their husbands." The headless body of Whale turned over and over in the river, making the Big Falls more thunderous, as they are today. Fox and his wife were reconciled, but since the Whale was conquered, the Land People and the Water People have been enemies.


From Coyote Stores by Mourning dove (Humishuma)
University of Nebraska Press, 1990


Price: $150.00 | Print Size 16.5"x 19" |







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Name of Print - Coyote and Crow

Coyote traveled through the country, making it ready for the new people, the Native Americans who were to follow. When he finally came to the Puget Sound country, he was very hungry. He saw Crow sitting on a high cliff with a bit of deer fat in his mouth. The sight of it made Coyote even hungrier and he wondered how he could get that fat. He thought hard and come up with a plan. Calling out to Crow, he said "Oh, Chief! I hear that you can make a pleasing sound with your voice. Let me hear your voice, O Chief Crow." Crow was pleased with the title of chief and answered, "Caw." "Oh, Chief Crow," called Coyote, "I know that you can sing better than that. Sing a good song for me, Oh Wise Chief." Crow, even more pleased at being called wise, opened his mouth wide and called in a loud voice, "C-A-A-W." Naturally, the deer fat fell from his mouth into the mouth of the Coyote. Coyote laughed scornfully. "You are not wise; you are not even a chief! I called you that because I was hungry and wanted your deer fat. Now because of your foolishness you will be hungry instead of me!"


Price: $150.00 | Print Size 16 1/2" x 15"  |




                   
As I was going to St. Ives