Rabbit Fools Coyote

So Coyote went along, for he knew he couldn’t get the rabbit out of the prairie-dog hole. He went around in the woods. He tried to catch some chipmunks, but they just ran up the trees and he couldn’t catch them. He saw a squirrel, but the squirrel ran up a tree and escaped too. He was cursing himself and hating himself because the people were afraid of him and ran away wherever he went. He was getting hungry.

Then he saw a rabbit in front of him. He started to run after it. The rabbit ran for a hollow log which he knew about and ran right through it. Coyote almost caught him, but the rabbit ran into the log just ahead of him. Coyote was smelling in that hole. He put his head right in. The rabbit was far ahead by this time in some bushes and looking back.

Coyote got some rocks and filled up the hole at one end of the log. Then he walked around and did the same at the other end. Then he sat down for a while and rested, for he had been running and was out of breath.

He said to himself, “Codi is going to have a good dinner. He hasn’t eaten in a long time. At last I’ve caught a rabbit.”

He had a flint tied around his neck. He always carried this. He picked up a rock and struck the flint against it and built a fire in this way. He started to burn the log. The fire made a popping noise. “That’s the rabbit’s eye popping,” he thought. The other end of the log popped. “That’s the other eye. Now you can run around without eyes.” Then there was another popping noise. “That’s your glands. Now there you are!” Coyote was glad. He listened to the popping. “I’m going to have a nice dinner,” he said. He sat in the shade and watched until the log was reduced to ashes.

When it was all burned he looked for a long stick and pushed aside the ashes to find the rabbit. He was very happy at first. But he could find nothing.

He stopped. He said, “What is the matter with me? Here I had a rabbit and I have burned it all to pieces!”

*

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