The Coyote In The Corner

When we were kids, we spent a lot of time at our cousins’ houses. I remember one house where one of my cousins’ bedroom was in the basement. It was kind of spooky down there–in a fun kind of way–and I remember how we’d try to scare each other. The following story might be true, or maybe it’s just another one of my wild tales. You be the judge.

The Coyote In The Corner


It sits in the corner, half-hidden in shadows

Next to the old rocking chair

Layered with dust and staring

Its single eye glowing yellow

Neck stretched forward

Poised as if to leap

Its bared teeth are dull and yellowed

I know this, having seen it in the daylight


Lightning flashes and thunder crashes

And the coyote in the corner growls


My limbs ache with fear

My excitement so keen

I can see it dancing before me

As my mind races and my body tingles

And I feel as though I’m floating above the bed


Silence settles over the room

Wrapping around me

Like an unwanted embrace

Then… a soft wet sound

At one side of my face

I refuse to turn and see

Imagining blood

Dripping from wet pink lips

Hot breath on my cheek

I feel the one glowing eye

Staring… hungry


I bolt from the bed stuffed coyote toy

And run, screaming, up the basement stairs

Copyright © 2013 C Mashburn

Sharing this with the talented folks at dVerse poets pub tonight on their Poetics feature, Brian has monsters on the brain, and wants to see if we can cause him to have nightmares. I’m yer huckleberry. 🙂



  1. Thanks for sharing ! Love it.

  2. hahahaha nice….one night in november, i was maybe ten…i woke up and looked across the room only to see a disembodied head staring at me…i remember not being able to breath and just watching it for a bit…finally i screamed and my dad came in…it was my brothers halloween mask on the dresser…ha…fun read man…

    • Yep. Lot’s of things can scare kids; especially those of us with vivid imaginations!

  3. Aaah! A child’s imaginings are rampant! Somehow this reminds me of a 4 legged version of a cyclops!

    • I adapted this from a story I wrote years ago; the coyote in the story is the creation of a taxidermist, and has only one eye because the shot that killed it took the other eye out. The story is totally fictitious, and so is the coyote. The basement bedroom was real, and I remember it vividly.

  4. Rowan Taw said

    Having never seen a coyote, other than the one chasing roadrunner in the cartoons, I’ve never found them particularly scary, but your poem does a good job of breathing the fear.

    • Actually, they are kind of spooky critters. Very sneaky. I had one charge at me one night when I was working on a hay farm in the Arizona desert. It was probably rabid. I did not stick around to investigate; jumped into my pickup and got out of there!

      • Rowan Taw said

        I hadn’t thought about the possibility of rabies – yikes!

      • It’s a real thing out in the desert farm country!

  5. Ooooh scary things in the basement… if it was a real one well I’d bolt up the stairs too! Mind you even if it wasn’t real on a stormy night…I’d still bolt up the stairs. Excellent scary tale can just picture it!

    • The story is fictitious, but I can see it too! The coyote is stuffed–as in by a taxidermist–which combined with a storm and a dark basement, makes for a pretty frightening tale, I think.

  6. Scary … until the photo of that daft cuddly toy ~ heh-heh 🙂 Nice one Charles.

    • I put the cute coyote in there for Sherry; didn’t want her to have nightmares, so I finished with a soft and cuddly image.

  7. OMGee this is funny 🙂

  8. Truedessa said

    Oh, I really enjoyed this piece from start to enjoyable..well done

  9. a writer’s imagination starts early… a lot of emotion in this

  10. kkkkaty said

    A very crafty poem you have written here 😉

  11. aka_andrea said

    A very fun write indeed.

  12. Raivenne said

    The stuffed coyote at the end just nails it, LOL!

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