Coyote Tears

by Carolyn Dunn

Mist of rain

and wild tobacco

dot the earth

in subtle

songs of remembrance


longing for

the loss of a language

of harvest

and blessing.

To rule this land

is to subjugate

the center

of the world

by blood,

by living,

by water

and power.

And she knows

the sound

of footprints

upon rain

is a breath

of dying

and decay.

So this land


barely standing in

the midst

of darkness

and peverse delight.

Oh where

is the song

of survival,

of living

on the

cusp of disaster?

I can see her:

in wild tobacco

in a mist of rain

that sails away

on a whisper

of survival.

I wander

the landscape,

her breasts empty

only for those

who do not


I picked this earth clean,

and she gave me

wild tobacco,

a mist of blessing rain,

a breath of desire

and she sings

sacred songs

only for those

who listen.

Tears glisten

upon the breath

of ancestors

who cry

what they want

to know

and what will happen

if I begin

to howl a love song

lost to the souls

of decay

and wonder

here is

my voice?

Where is

the red earth

and gifts she honored me

as my tears

land in soft

moon shaped

puffs of smoke,

turning ash

to clay

and wild tobacco

singing. . .