Coyote and the Fire Gift

Long ago, Coyote brought Fire to Man
And we were warm through the dark nights
Legend says that Man was grateful;
Legend seldom gets it right…

Stealing fire, stealing fire

Coyote brought the flame-gift down to Man,
And they chased him with sticks and stones.
His long pink tongue lapped the blood from his wounds;
And that night he burned their homes.

Stealing fire, stealing fire

All that night, by fire’s light
Coyote and Man each slept outside.
Coyote burned, Coyote bruised,
Coyote battered, Coyote hurt—
Coyote, he slept satisfied.

Stealing fire, stealing fire;
Stealing fire,
Stealing fire!


So if there’s any myth like this out there, I haven’t found it. I wrote this some years back, and it was quite a long time before I ever googled “Coyote steals fire”.

Things seldom go well for those who steal fire. But most of the time, myths focus on how extremely annoyed the Gods get when you nick their stuff.  I have to have written this when I was, oh, around 30, I’d say, which would put it a good fifteen years ago.  I was… a much less cynical person at the time.  (I don’t think I necessarily have perfect memories of myself at thirty; I simply know that my biggest life changes are less than two years old)  So I’m not sure where this story came from.  It was part of a longer song cycle, “Ash”.

I can tell you this: in the folklore of my former marriage, my husband and I both credit this song with moving him, with helping him fall in love with me, with helping us be together.

But I like it anyway.

And This Is The Part Where I Talk About My Book, And My Upcoming Event, In The Third Person:

Jeff Mach is one of the universe’s most notable fictional monsters; and running a convention for Villains (check it out:  He tries to avoid being self-conscious about writing these little promotional blurbs, but he is, and he covers it up with a little bit of honest, but quite self-deprecating, humor.   Anyway, Jeff Mach writes stuff, which you probably know if you’re seeing this, considering the fact that the website is called “Jeff Mach Writes”. His Twitter is @darklordjournal, and there’s nothing to stop you from buying his novel, “There and NEVER, EVER BACK AGAIN: Diary of a Dark Lord“. Except for common decency, obviously.


Jeff Mach Written by:

Jeff Mach is an author, playwright, event creator, and certified Villain. You can always pick up his bestselling first novel, "There and NEVER, EVER BACK AGAIN"—or, indeed, his increasingly large selection of other peculiar books. If you'd like to talk more to Jeff, or if you're simply a Monstrous Creature yourself, stop by @darklordjournal on Twitter, or The Dark Lord Journal on Facebook.