This morning, the dog and I were coming back across the back yards when we heard a dog bark, a dog bark I didn’t recognize, but I certainly don’t know all the dogs farther north. But the dog barked a couple of times and then there was silence and then we heard this: a long howl, “Aw0000000,” and over the long howl, a sound like this “Ah woo, Ah woo” pause, “Ah woo, ah woo.”
And I felt this electricity go through my body because I couldn’t quite tell what was making the noise–though I think it must have been coyotes because it made the dog and the cat nervous–but I recognized the “Ah woo, ah woo” part.
But how? I don’t know coyote songs. I certainly don’t have knowledge of some canon of greatest hits of coyote songs.
But it was the same sounds Sid Hemphill makes at the beginning of “Devil’s Dream.” And it made me wonder if Sid Hemphill heard coyotes out in the fields in the early morning, too. Had coyotes made their way into Mississippi by then? I mean, I know he’s playing an actual song and I know a hand-hewn flute only sounds like itself. I know it’s just a coincidence.
But it’s the kind of coincidence that makes me so lucky to experience it.