Tag Archives: spirit

Wild Man – Part 2 – Spirit Trail

Spirit Trail.  I arrived at sunset, locked the truck, placed a small flashlight in Setting prairie  sunmy pocket, and hooked my water bottle on my braided leather belt. Across the grasslands Mingus mountain rose up to an imposing cumulus cloud bank.  Lightning crackled and broke the length of the range.

Folklore names the full moon of July the thunder moon, and thunder rolled from the far mountains to the meadow in which I stood.  In the nearly extinguished light, the land trembled.  I could see from the flatland where I stood to the first distant rise in the trail.  That was where it seemed the curtain of storm was drawn across the landscape.

The only lightning in the area was over the mountains miles away. I was drawn to this place on this night, the phase of the moon, and the threatening conditions. I passed through the gate and began my journey.

The lights of the village behind me, the rising full moon before me was totally eclipsed by the thunderheads. I wondered if the batteries would last for the return trip.

I walked as I had become accustomed to walking in the wild lands, by talking out loud to whoever listens in such places.

“What do I do next? I have a landslide list of stuff to do every day.  I have people I love who need help. I have strangers who need help.  How do I do it? Huh? I’m going crazy over here trying to take care of some people’s needs, people suffering for no good reason!  How do I do it?  I need some some direction!”

I calmed a bit as I walked.

“Could you send me a sign?  How about a spirit animal with a message of wisdom and great abundance?  Or a burning bush maybe?”

Having been face-to-face with unexpected  animals in the wild, I had momentary second thoughts, . . especially when recalling the creature from my dreams.  That is what brought me here.  The dream of the wild man crept around the periphery of my thoughts..

To shake off the fears and doubts I moved in to my usual hiking ritual, . . talking myself through the Serenity Prayer. Some times it requires verbal wrestling to get through it.

“Higher Power, God, Goddess, Creator, Great Spirit, Yahweh, whatever Your Name, you know who you are.  You know who I am.  I hope I have my bases covered.”

“Please grant me the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change.”

Walk, walk, think, walk.

“I mean if it works out that you can help me with this, I would be grateful!”

Walk, walk.

“I tend to carry the weight of the world on my shoulders, and my shoulders hurt, and I need a rest.”

Walk, walk, think.

“Also, please grant me the courage to change the things I can change in the world. Yeah a double dose of courage for that. I have learned some things that can help victims of terrible crimes against humanity. Well you know.”

Walk, walk, think, walk.

“It is no surprise to you of course, I want to share what I have learned in a way that helps those innocents who suffer for the sins of others. , etc. etc. You get my drift.  You been there from the beginning!”

“You know sometimes I think nobody wants to hear what I have to say! Can you help with that? If so, I would greatly appreciate it.”

Walk, think, walk, think, walk.

“Also, please help me with the wisdom to know the difference between what I can and cannot change. I don’t want to hit my head against a wall or spin my wheels or waste anybody’s time, most importantly my own.  I am a grandfather! I’m getting old.  I should be retired and writing my memoirs.”

Walk, walk, walk.

In the darkness quietly, my voice became more relaxed and reverent.

“Hey, you’re an infinite being of infinite understanding. I’m counting on you havin’ an infinite sense of humor.”

Walk, walk.

“Sorry about the whining.”

Walk, walk, walk.

“You know my heart.”

Walk, walk, walk, walk.

The sun well-set and well-behind me.

Lightning crackled above the mountains ahead.

Thunder and moon hid

behind mountains

of darkly curious clouds.

I stopped thinking

walked silently


the storm.




“Making music is the most fun a human being can have in life with his/her  clothes on.”

(Unknown Nashville songwriter)

That has pretty much been my experience. When everyone’s talents and passions come together, something beautiful happens, and we are transported, . . even if just for a few moments, . . to a place where magic happens, and three ordinary guys can Run With Coyote.


I read a story about one red man’s first encounter with a white man. The Native man watched the European man from a distance in the forest. The newcomer to his land carried a heavy iron stick that he pointed at brother deer. A thunder-clap exploded from the stick and brother deer dropped dead.

The Indian watched as the white man dressed out the carcass, saving the hide and meat on which he later feasted. The next day the Indian watched as the white man again pointed his thunder-stick at another brother deer, at even greater distance, and again brother deer dropped dead.

What startled and confounded the Indian man is that he watched as the newcomer turned and walked away from his kill, back to his camp, while admiring his weapon.

In astonishment, the Indian man’s mind thunder-clapped, “What kind of creatures are these?!”


For me, the spirit of that story combined with a local newspaper article twenty years ago.  There was an upcoming project by authorities in north-central Arizona to “thin the coyote population” by shooting them from a helicopter with a shotgun.

My original title was “Shotgun Coyote” and this song is my crying out a warning to the coyotes.  Doc helped finish off the lyrics and made the recording happen.  Bubba worked his guitar and studio gifts.  The day we created this song, in our minds and hearts, we were  with the coyotes.

Perhaps you will be there with us.

Vocals by Dennis “Doc” McCracken and guitar by James ” Bubba” Hudson, Nashville.

coyote in desert postcardClick RUN WITH COYOTE SONG

Then click your download.




Lyrics by Jeff “Reddog” Kirkendall & Dennis “Doc” McCracken

Vocals by Doc McCracken

Reddog & Sundancer
Reddog & Sundancer

Guitar by Bubba Hudson

Recorded by Behind-the-Tack-Shed-Studios, Nashville, TN 2/2/96

Dear Readers & Listeners,

I wrote the foundation of this song when I had been through enough hard times in life to appreciate the fact that facing the truth is not only the-right-thing-to-do, it can also be the most mysterious and exciting.

The song shares the notion that facing the truth and doing the right thing have an intuitive rhythm.  When practiced and done well, you don’t have to think.  You sense the mood, act, and experience the quiet joy of the truth setting you free.

This song came in a dream.  Bubba captures this quality with his truly fine guitar work.  The magic of Doc’s vocals brings the message home.


Replies and Forwardings are greatly appreciated.

Many blessings to you and your relatives this Year 2013,

J. Kirkendall



Come with me; let’s take a ride
      On an Arapaho pony called Dreamer
Wrap tight your legs; let loose the reins
      Open up your eyes to your Redeemer

          Yes, listen to the call of your Redeemer


Come with me, on a starlit night
      Ride to the edge of all you know
Sacred canyons, whispering winds
      Mysteries you’ve yet to know

          There are powers you have yet to know


Come with me, and I will show you
      The light your spirit longs to show
You’ll cry out with passion, and you’ll weep with joy
      To find out who you are, you must surrender

          Yes, to know who you are . . . surrender


Come with me; take a leap of faith
      On this war pony called Dreamer
If you ride with me, I’ll set you free
      I’m what your soul’s been yearning for

          Yes, I am Truth, your Redeemer

               On a pony called Dreamer
                    The truth is your Redeemer
                         The truth of Dreamer