The Desert’s Amazing Life Forms – Part One

Southern New Mexico Desert

Southern New Mexico Desert

Back from a trip to New Mexico, part of it spent in silent retreat surrounded by infinite sky and a multitude of desert life forms. Recent rains generated abundant and diverse wildflowers and swelled the canyon creek to a river.

The air smelled like pungent rain soaked sweetness. 

Camera in hand, this splendor presented itself in a magnificent dance. I ended up taking so many photos that I decided to offer them in a series of posts starting with this one, since it seemed such an apropos way to begin a retreat. 

For the bug squeamish, you might want to wait till the next post!

. . .

So much aliveness, yet, underneath the ever-present Stillness. 

. . .

In the desert all kind of critters show up going about their natural life. Away from city noise, the rural quiet seems to heighten the senses to the smallest movements –  thankfully – revealing this on the bathroom rug at four o’clock in the morning.

Yes! This is a Scorpion - Caution: Wear Shoes

Yes! This is a Scorpion – Caution: Wear Shoes

And this one, also seen in the bathroom during a sleepless vigil.

Another Bathroom Nighttime Visitor

Another Bathroom Nighttime Visitor

Well, never having seen such a creature like this before, I got to Witness my mind in its initial reaction……egads! What is this, this thing which I later found out is referred to as the Child of God, as only the Divine could love such a critter, so the folk-lore goes. How steeped we are with visceral conditioning that immediately an eyuuuu!! flies out from the mouth.

On another night I spied its cousin about to crawl into my sleeping quarters, and using a broom, quickly re-located the six-inch giant outside the house. This one I discovered hanging on the screen door, waiting for the right moment to sneak inside.


Standing Back about Five-Feet (just in case) using the Zoom

Standing Back about Five-Feet (just in case)

Being in silence I could not ask anyone about these beasties, and beside no one was around to ask. I wanted to know if it was poisonous or not (like how close is advisable and will it eat my fingers off?). I managed to get the first one under a cup and out the door. Then I discovered a book on the deserts and found out this black beauty with overdeveloped pincers is NOT a stinging scorpion, although a member of the Whip Scorpion tribe that immobilize their prey (worms, insects and slugs) with ascetic acid, or vinegar, hence how it got is name the Giant Vinegaroon. So much for that bit of insect lore, now we shall move on to something a bit more benign.

Lace and Spring Green

Lace and Spring Gree

This lime green delicate cricket with transparent wings sang me awake at one a.m. When I chased it with my handy bug cup, it crawled up onto a book – perhaps he/she had an interest in Buddhist philosophy?

A Buddhist Scholar Perhaps?

A Buddhist Scholar Perhaps?

The desert exploded in a symphony from all the miscellaneous crickets, the first one my friend caught after its back legs had been hit by a car – he knew my amazement at the life forms here and saved this one for my perusal. It was still alive when I first noticed it atop a white piece of paper on the table. I sent a prayer wishing for its peace and freedom from suffering, a moment later I felt its life force leave its form with a simple poof and a quiet, joyful let go.

Cricket Blending In

Cricket Blending In

Colorful Cricket in Release

Colorful Cricket in Release

Oh, and of course, the delicate winged member of every garden, fluttering here and there among the flowers and the grasses.

Butterfly and Cricket

Butterfly and Cricket

Oh, how graced we are to share this planet with so many diverse and unique forms, going about their business in this phantasmagoria called Life.


To see the Divine everywhere is given to us for more than seeing,

it’s given to us to Be That.

– Adyashanti –


About smallpebbles

A simple life unfolding moment by moment
This entry was posted in Butterfly, Nature, New Mexico, Oneness, Peace, Photographs, Silence and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to The Desert’s Amazing Life Forms – Part One

  1. marga t. says:

    Ah, so grateful for all of life forms in such amazing costumes that you share – pushing my eewww out further and further into wonder 🙂

    • smallpebbles says:

      Oh, thanks for the laugh, definitely pushed my ewwww way out as well! At some point, especially when it becomes clear it is best to just deal with the ones in the house, the ewwwww shifts into curiosity, as you well said, for all the unique and marvelous creatures that inhabit our telescope.

  2. KM Huber says:

    Wonderful post, marvelous photos. Thanks so much! BTW, your joy comes through in word and image.

    • smallpebbles says:

      Thanks Karen! It’s funny how blogging is really a joyful offering, a vehicle to ride the waves of manifestation like a surfer in relaxed harmony. Always appreciate your comments – xx…..kai

  3. omtatjuan says:

    What kind of 6 inch animal/insect is that? I once had a 6 inch spider keep me company in my room in India. Don’t worry they called it a room spider. It kept the other bugs out.

    • smallpebbles says:

      It is called a Giant Vinegaroon – seems they are a speciality of the Chihuahuan desert – not poisonous to humans, but oh,would much rather see them in their natural environs then in the house!

      • omtatjuan says:

        Still I suppose another one of them say, “Hey Fred.. how ya doing? Looking good!”

        • smallpebbles says:

          For sure, that is Lucy or Matilda talking! Of course, the famous quote: “beauty is in the eye of the beholder!” Maybe another way to say that, is…..Beauty is in the “i” of the Unknown…….tra la la….

  4. risinghawk says:

    Some of them critters look a bit unnerving! Glad you had fun – good to have you back 🙂

  5. lauriesnotes says:

    Love the quote. Welcome back. 🙂
    Thank you for sharing your adventures. I have been doing some of my own – in a different way 🙂
    Much love –
    Always a blessing to see your pebbles.

  6. dadirri7 says:

    wonderful creatures never seen before … love to see them all and hear your tales of bug cup and screen door 🙂

    • smallpebbles says:

      Yes, well have always enjoyed witnessing the critters inhabiting your part of the planet. Staying in the desert, in an area relatively free from human over-reach, to Witness the circle of Life – the heart bows down in Reverence – what a gift to bear Witness……thanks sisterji…..shanti

  7. Jayashri Fairclough says:

    Wow! Reminds me of a Walt Disney film I saw in the 50’s, The Living Desert, in which there was a fight between a scorpion and a tarantula. They played squaredancing music in the back ground. It was quite a dance, and the scorpion won, if I remember correctly.

Comments are closed.