Thomas Doty – Storyteller

Coyote's Riddling Talk


Messing with Words

Coyote the trickster loves riddles, and he gets tail-wagging ecstatic trying to stump others with what he considers to be tricksy word plays. Please note that the answers to all of Coyote's riddles are geographically located within Doty and Coyote's homeland of southern Oregon and northern California. In addition, all of the cultural information you need for solving the riddles can be found on this website.

Riddling Talk #7

Coyote says, "His Old Time lodge is a theatre, and he does it all. He acts his play, directs his show, designs his dance, paints the scenery, and messes with the light. And every night is showtime. Though he is a solo performer, he shines with the brilliance of seven seasoned actors. He's more than just a star! As he makes his rounds around center stage, his fire burns bright and true. Though his mortal relations doze through the long, dark act that begins and ends his play, his show must go on! And it does. Who is he?"


Riddling Talk #6

Coyote says, "One became two. Though opposite, their name is redundant. Birdsong heralds their beginning and their end. A mirror of my mythic mind, we world-changers walk the same path. While I strut my stuff center-stage in the spotlight, the universe eternally revolves around them. They stole my show! Who are they?"


Riddling Talk #5

Coyote says, "Here is an ancient name and a newbie nickname. The latter has a longer tail that hisses. One is what they call me in the Land of Burnt Out Fires where I am a mighty hero of mythological strength. The other, when muttered in the lesser tongue of new arrivals, is my wimpy almost-identical twin. Scholars smirk that together we are an unintended cross-cultural pun, but they don't know much. Who are we?"


Riddling Talk #4

Coyote says, "One town boasts, 'I'm a mountain' and the other shouts, 'I've found it!' Their names sound so alike to my doggy ears that one might be an echo of the other, but they aren't. And folklorists say I've got a split personality! Those gold-grabbing guys were nuts! Sometimes I think I'm in one town when I'm actually in the other, or is it the other way around? Help me out here. Which is which?"


Riddling Talk #3

Coyote says, "Rocks and water, rocks and water! One in the north, one in the south. A bitter wind blows here and there, and tales about ME are wagged with the same tongue. What's the one true Indian name of these places?"


Riddling Talk #2

Coyote says, "Not another bite of this chunky mush! Pincers in the depths pinch my tongue, and the taste is too familiar. No goodies in this doggone doggy bowl are worth munching, and the smell offends even me! What name is stenciled on my bowl?"


Riddling Talk #1

Coyote says, "On this downhill walk, I drink my fill at the beginning till my bones ache in the middle. I sit on my tail at the end. Thinking back, this trek was a pain in the neck! At least it was mostly downhill. Where am I walking?"