Living on the edge of the woods is not always a restful place to be in the middle of the night. Drunken gangs of unwashed, unruly coyotes gather in the dark by the front parking lot, hunting in the grass between us and the Library. Just as we all peacefully fall sleep, those scurvy, classless thugs slither though the brush, sniffing out their next meal. Any possible sleep is rudely interrupted by loud, shrill yips and howls as they stalk their next meal.
Soon some proud testosterone-filled coyote loudly announces he alone has successfully cornered the prey. Unable to restrain myself, I jump out of bed enraged, ready to shoot at the frenzied mob gathered below. (If only I knew where that pistol is I never used. I locked it up and hid it five years ago, who knows where, maybe in my other house. I guess my son will find it someday.) I’ll skip this next part, since my neighbors overlooking the parking lot don’t need to relive what is to follow. I really suspect we all suffer from PTSD from the trauma of this part of the story.
After the hunt and the unruly celebratory feast ends, the tequila is passed from one classless, uneducated creature to another, as they squat in a circle by the parking lot. I always imagine they are sitting with their scrawny hairy “arms” around each other’s shoulders, swaying back and forth drunkenly. The more inebriated they are, the louder the singing and celebration becomes. The shrieking off-key howling is deafening. This is definitely not the Frank Sinatra type of soulful crooning my father loved. It is shrill, screechy, and offensive.
Someone on the balcony above joins my angry tirade, until at last the wretched beasts slink drunkenly off into the darkness, sated and fat with satisfaction.
I fall back asleep wondering, would living in downtown Chicago or Albuquerque be any better? After all, we did move
in on these beasts of nature, and maybe we can’t expect them to be as civilized as we are. Still, why couldn’t they be vegetarian?