Thomas Doty – Storyteller
Doty & Coyote Stories
These stories dramatize the journeys, adventures and musings of Doty, a wandering tale-teller, and Mister Coyote, his somewhat-mythic, snoop-nosed pal. Each story has a cover photo and several drawings, and is a poetic tapestry of personal experiences, myths, folklore and history.
Doty & Coyote welcome you to their native world. Enjoy!
Doty and Coyote meet the spirit of the poet Ben Hur Lampman in an old house near the Rogue River. The three of them walk back through time to participate in the Sacred Salmon Ceremony at the ancient Takelma village of Ti'lomikh.
Doty and Coyote spend the night in a canyon up Ashland Creek to get out of the wind. Doty tells a story about the rich mythology of the Rogue Valley Takelmas, and of a mythic journey up Lower Table Rock.
Doty and Coyote return to the village site of Ti'lomikh along the Rogue River. The place has changed since their last visit during the Sacred Salmon Ceremony and they decide it is time for a new ceremony. While stitching together a tent in the shape of a giant salmon, they are visited by several characters from the native stories.
Coyote meets Doctor Doggerel, cowboy poet and former large animal veterinarian.
Doty and Coyote and Fox Girl visit the ancient village of Gumbat. On the shore of Tule Lake, they improvise a play they call Making the World in the Spring. In the play, Coyote Old Man, Basket Woman, Bear and Fire journey through the Klamath Basin in search of Old Time creation stories.
Deep in the desert, Coyote leads Doty on a short adventure that leads to "someplace wonderful."
In their first story together, Doty the storyteller and Coyote, his canine sidekick, become best friends and journey from their Ashland home to Lake of the Woods, deep in the Cascade Mountains. Doty gives a dramatic campfire telling of a Crater Lake myth, and Doty and Coyote climb to the summit of Mount McLoughlin.
Doty and Coyote become friends. A version for young readers.
Guided by Mister Coyote, Doty journeys into the high country in search of Medicine Rock, an Old Time Takelma vision quest site for medicine people. This story chronicles the native history of the rock through five nights of dreams ... from the Rock People to a contemporary museum exhibit.
Doty puts on a bear mask and is chased by Coyote through Oregon Caves. They journey through stories, history and a magical landscape. In the depths of the Ghost Room, they encounter an "old timer" who seems to have stepped out of a myth.
Doty and Coyote journey with a Takelma family from their Rogue Valley village into the Siskiyou Mountains. This last food gathering trip of the fall turns into an adventure with a snowstorm, a cave and a visit to the secret village of the Digging Stick Women.
During the Rogue Indian War of the 1850s, John Beeson did an unpopular thing among the whites: he stood up for the rights of Indians. He was driven from his home by death threats, eventually becoming a national voice for native rights. Doty and Coyote go on a quest to discover the peace-loving spirit of Beeson.
Latgawa is the Takelma name of a region in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains where the first war was fought. Doty visits Camp Latgawa, and his exploration of the countryside (joined by Coyote) becomes a journey that deeply connects landscape and people in ways that are personal, cultural and spiritual.
Doty and Coyote are joined by Coyote's grandmother in a walk from the Siletz Indian Reservation in northern Oregon to their homeland along the Rogue River. Following the Takelma Trail of Tears in reverse, this journey through landscape and time is edged with unsettling revelations.
Doty, self-appointed old west wordsmith, and his legendary sidekick, Cowpoke Coyote, arrive by stagecoach at the Rock Point Hotel and Stage Station. It is Halloween night along the Rogue River. Among trees and tombstones, a green fog forms in the nearby cemetery. Doty and Coyote step through the door and into a spooky night of stories.
A short walk in the fog on Lower Table Rock takes Doty and Coyote to the edge.
In the spring after the Biscuit Fire of 2002, Doty and Coyote walk into a burned area along the Illinois River in southern Oregon. In the storytelling time of twilight, memories and myths mingle as Doty and Coyote journey into the native view of fire.
Doty and Coyote visit an ancient native village site along Deer Creek near downtown Roseburg. As they listen to an old woman tell a story, Doty finds himself journeying with the Old Ones, following a legendary White Deer deep into the mists of Umpqua mythology.
Doty borrows Coyote's buckskin bag of magical masks and makes seasonal treks to the Table Rocks along the Rogue River. To the Takelmas, this region is known as the Ribs of the Animal, the center of the native universe where most anything is possible.
At the ancient healing waters of Buckhorn Springs, Doty and Coyote meet Gwisgwashan, the Keeper of Stories, the voice of Mother Landscape herself. Friends gather in firelight, and as a troupe of tellers, they perform the stories of the springs, from creation to the present.
Doty searches for a legendary tree on the Oregon Coast where Old Time stories are stored. He meets a menagerie of characters ... South Wind, Wild Woman, Ice Man, Bashō and, of course, Coyote. During a Mythtime moment, the tree receives a new native story.
Doty searches for a legendary tree on the Oregon Coast where Old Time stories are stored. A version for young readers.
Doty and Coyote take an autumn trek to the summit of Table Mountain, in the Greensprings region of the Cascade Mountains. They meet an old man who has been spending the winters in the abandoned fire lookout. Doty and Coyote listen to the old man spin a tale as the first snowstorm of the season settles in.
Doty and Coyote travel into the redwoods in search of a tree in a photo from Doty's youth. Encouraged by masterful taunts from his trickster friend, Doty journeys deep into the relationship he and the Old Ones share with the ancient race of Tree People.
With Fern Ridge Reservoir drained to repair the dam, Doty and Coyote and a mysterious old man journey across the dry lakebed into the heart of the Kalapuya homeland. Their search for the sacred confluence of Coyote Creek and Long Tom River becomes a mythic adventure.
Doty and Coyote wait for the return of the spirit of Rock Old Woman, a Takelma medicine woman. At the ancient Grave Creek crossing, they witness centuries of stories pass by. The story includes a myth-like journey along the old Indian trail to the summit of Sexton Mountain, the traditional home of Rock Old Woman.
Doty and Coyote participate in an ancient native tradition and become Culture Watchers, exploring the Columbia River country, having a look at the native views and myths of Wimahl, "Big River."
In the confusion caused by Coyote's disappearance just before closing time, Doty and Coyote get locked inside a museum in the central Oregon high desert. An entire culture of critters emerge out of the evening shadows, and Doty and Coyote spend the night hearing the stories of several Animal People, including Otter Woman, Porcupine and Rollhead Owl.
This story takes place before Doty and Coyote become friends. In this short prequel to Where the Sun and Moon Live and The Day Tule Lake Came Back, Doty tells the story of his first visit to the Modoc homeland near Tule Lake.
With a mysterious young man as a guide, Doty and Coyote travel underground through lava caves from Lower Klamath Lake to the center of the Modoc universe. Along the way they experience Old Time myths of the sun, moon and stars, witness the supernova of 1054 and visit a sacred solstice site.
Drawing & Photo by Thomas Doty.
Website © 1997- by Thomas Doty.