The Coyote & The Prairie Dog is a Hopi story performed by a native Hopi speaker and a second English speaker. The video was made by alias Rez02 as a project at the Moenkopi Youth Centre in Tuba City, Arizona in 2002. In this story, Coyote does not act as a trickster, but still displays his curious nature. The Hopis had trickster stories, but this specific story is used to teach a lesson. (Erdoes and Ortiz 1998) This video is useful because it serves as a good reference point for how a trickster tale is told in it's natural language and register, and translated into English. There are two performers who speak at relatively the same page, so because the female's version is much longer, it can be deducted that Hopi stories, on average, took longer to tell.

Video Transcription
Prairie Dog & Coyote - 2002

Prairie Dog & Coyote - 2002

Hopi language version of story...

This is a story about Coyote and Prairie Dog. At the foot of the mesa, near Coyote Ridge, lived Prairie Dog. He made his home in some rocks.

One day while Coyote was out hunting he sat down by the rock to rest. Suddenly, he heard a whistle. A very loud whistle. He jumped up. He looked all around, but could see no one. So he sat down again. Again he heard the whistle, but this time he saw the prairie dog, sitting on top of one of the rocks.

"Oh, it was you that whistled," said the coyote. "I always whistle when I am happy," said the prairie dog. "It's my way of singing."

"I have heard you before," said the coyote. "I have wondered what it was. Now I know. I can't whistle but I have my own kind of sound. So when I hear you again, I will answer back with my own sound," said the coyote.

So if you are listening closely some evenings you will hear the coyote and prairie dog. The end. And cut!

Source: YouTube permalink
Source: Transcribed from multiple viewings of the video.

Further ThoughtEdit

See Talk:The Coyote & The Prairie Dog for questions to think about and discuss.

  Twbtg2's Project on Native American Trickster Stories edit

Navigation: Twbtg2 - Abstract - Table of Contents - All Articles - Suggested Routes - Sources
Elements: Trickster story type - Coyote - List and maps of Native American tribes
Stories: The Coyote & The Prairie Dog - Coyote and Junco - Coyote and Turtle Story - Coyote Races Buffalo - Coyote Steals a Drink - Don't Be Too Curious - Rabbit's Short Tail
Approaches: Ethnopoetics - Performance Theory - Immanent Art - All
Sources: American Indian Trickster Tales - Calvin Grinnell Interview - A Coyote Reader - Coyote Stories - Finding the Center - How to Read an Oral Poem - Inconstant Companions - Tales of the North American Indians - The Telling of the World - All

The Video Lover Route

Coyote and Turtle StoryCoyote Races BuffaloRabbit's Short TailThe Coyote & The Prairie DogSourcesOther Routes

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