Victoria Sullivan

Victoria Sullivan at the 2016 Albany Word Fest - Up The River Reading

Coyote Checks Out the Hood

There’s a coyote running loose
in my neighborhood, which
wouldn’t be so odd if I didn’t
live on the upper west side
of Manhattan. An old lover
called me up to warn me from
the Queens Expressway.
He’d heard of it on the radio.
Glad he’s still looking out
for me, I guess. And my
vigilant daughter texted me
this morning, so I let her know
that I’m good at taming coyotes–
also by text–and that I’d have him
calmed down shortly. She had
the good sense to know I was
kidding around since I’ve never tamed
a coyote–consciously anyway–
and animals In general have me stumped,
particularly homo sapiens, an animal
more wily than most, and prone
to fouling its own nest. I like
to think that this particular coyote
is in my neighborhood for the book
stores and the Starbucks coffee,
that he’s a discerning coyote with
an intellectual bent, or maybe
he’s seeking the old west end bar
where Kerouac and Ginsberg used
to hang out back in the late l1940’s.
Perhaps he’s a totem of our inner
selves: lean, adventurous, hungry
for life. Or maybe he’s just lost.


Victoria Sullivan is both a poet and a playwright, as well as co-host of a local radio show on WDST 100.1 FM (“The Woodstock Roundtable, of which she is the “poet laureate”). Her published chapbooks include: The Divided BedAlzheimer DreamsEating Figs at Twilight, and When I wasn’t Looking. Her work has appeared in numerous journals, including Pothooks & Hangers, Artist and Influence, Home Planet News, Poetry in Performance, Up the River, Northeast Corridor and Wild Flowers, as well as in several anthologies. She particularly enjoys performing her work in various venues around the Hudson Valley.

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