Long, long ago, the moon was always in the sky, not just at night but during the daytime, too. Coyote loved the moon. Each night he stood before it and looked for his reflection in its surface.
And each night he thought about how beautiful he was, silvery like the moon, as he ran swiftly past the trees and rocks.
Every day, early in the morning, Coyote would venture out.
He would walk down to the lake and see his reflection there. And Coyote would think again how beautiful he was.
But then the time of great coldness came. Snow covered everything. And while Coyote could admire himself at night, during the day, the lake that was his mirror was covered in snow.
Not only was there little to eat. To make matters worse, Coyote could not see himself in the shimmering waters. Finally, with hunger gnawing at him, Coyote made his way toward the place where the sun set every night, looking for the warmth from its rays, and for the crystal lakes that would show Coyote his image once again.
Still the ground was frozen, and still there was little to eat. At night, Coyote would pause from his hunting and his travels and would still look up at the moon to see his reflection.
Coyote passed frozen prairies until he reached a new place, with soaring mountains of red. At last there was less snow, and an occasional rabbit to eat. Coyote thought about staying in this new place. It was a warmer place, but there were no lakes in which he could see himself each morning. That night, as he looked at the moon, he thought: if only I had the moon each day, I would not need the lakes I left behind. And so a plan was hatched.
That night, when it was almost morning, Coyote climbed to the top of the highest mountain he could find, as close to the moon as he could reach Then with a mighty leap he snatched the moon down. It slipped between the yucca plants and the pinon trees until it landed on a wide flat space.
Coyote looked at the morning sky. The moon was no longer there, but it was not needed, for the sun took over the sky in the daytime. Coyote looked down, and there was the moon, his moon, shimmering and placid like a lake. Coyote stared into it and once again, saw his reflection and once again thought how beautiful he was.
That night, when Coyote went out to hunt, the moon quietly slipped back up into the sky to shine.
But each morning, when Coyote returned from the hunt and came to admire himself, the moon was there, ready to reflect for him.
The bracelet that goes with this story can be found here.
Though this happened long long ago, Coyote still admires himself in the moon's surface every day.