Cool wind came over the desert and it rustled the chaparral. I couldn’t see or move. In the small of my back I felt a gentle push and heard soft words in Spanish, and I moved in the direction she urged. A coyote howled once, twice, sang his yip-yip-yeeees and a wet compress touched my wound like cactus brushing ragged naked flesh.Air calm, the red pain gone now, my felt skin warm, her hands like the gentle lapping of soothing Caribbean waters and I seemed to drift in its swell.
“Your hand feels good,” I said.
“I am not touching you, Senor.”
“What is it then?”
“You will be better. Stay there.” She put a blanket over me and sat down.
Coyotes packs not far off sang heavenly prayers and howled to the creatures they conquered in harmonies only they understand. Wind answered in a low whoosh sifting sand about the land. Feeling came back into my legs and I could see stars. I was thirsty, and asked Maya for water and she unscrewed a cap and poured a little in my mouth. She wet a compress and put it to my forehead. Neither of us said anything for a while.