One night, Coyote was lying on his back singing a dance song, and
he looked up in the sky, and noticed the stars were twinkling brilliantly.
Coyote thought they looked like beautiful Indian girls and thought
he would like to go up and see them.
So, Coyote went through the woods asking how he could go up to
the sky. Spider said she could weave a long rope and the giant Redwood
Tree said he could bend down to earth and throw Coyote up in the
sky so he could climb all the way.
When Coyote got there, he discovered the stars weren't just twinkling,
they were dancing. Well, Coyote thought himself a very fine dancer,
so he asked to join them in their dance. The star maidens answered,
"You couldn't dance with us, because we dance day and night, year
after year, and we never stop."
Ma ' ii BizO ' - Coyote
by Melvin Bainbridge
Coyote thought that, surely, if any girl can do that, then he,
so big and brave, could also dance forever. The stars said no, but
Coyote begged and pleaded, and teased until the girls said he could
join them. So, Coyote joined hands with the stars, and he danced
all over the heavens.
He got along alright for the first night, but the next night he
was very tired. He didn't want the girls to know he was tired, so
he asked, "May I stop for just a moment, to get a drink?" The stars
answered, "No, we told you. We dance forever and ever!"
They danced on, and Coyote began to get more tired, and his back
was aching, his legs were aching, and again he called out, "May
I stop to get a bite to eat, because I am very, very hungry!" And
the stars said, "You must dance on and on, and never stop."
Before long, the stars were dragging Coyote through the heavens.
Coyote sank lower and lower, and soon fell back to earth. He fell
so fast he looked like a shooting star.
Now, in the Klamath Region in Northern California, there is a great
hole in the ground, where Coyote hit. So the next time you see a
shooting star, you know Coyote is trying again to "Dance with the
- Ma ' ii BizO ' can be translated in Navajo as Thunder (pronounced
Mah ee bihzon). Canopus, called the Coyote Star in Navajo, is
one of the brightest stars in...
- Note: The Perseid meteor shower will be dimmed by the light
of the nearly full moon this August, but this astronomical event
is still one of the best opportunities of the year to look for