Oregon writer, Rain Trueax, and Oregon painter, Diane Widler Wenzel co-author Rainy Day Thought, where they write about ideas and creativity. Diane posts on Wednesdays and Rain on Saturdays. There may be extra days or changes as situations warrant. Comments are always welcome as it turns an article into a discussion. They must, however, be in English to avoid spam getting in here.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

the little things

by Rain Trueax

For some people, joy is found in a nice restaurant, fancy hotel, big vacation, going to a show, etc. etc. It's found in big things and changes from their daily routine; for some it can be thinking they are experiencing a world other than their own.

For me, joy is found in small things and almost always where I live. It's in observing the little creatures that share my land. They are the wild ones, the ones who live without a fence or even a boundary other than where they can find food.

The little ones are at the bottom of the food chain and hence have to be wary of what is around them as death can come from the sky or the land. When here, we see the predators-- Harris hawks, bobcats, and coyotes. Sometime I'll do a blog on them as they are not the bad guys. They kill because their lives depend on doing so. Even the javelina will kill on occasion even as they eat prickly pear cactus and other plant matter.

Observing these little ones at the bottom of the food chain, its easy to see how their knowledge of what also lives here influences their behavior. They don't stay somewhere for long. They cannot though hide from the rest of the world as, other than when they are babies, food does not come to them. They go to it.

Below are a few of those who share our little piece of Arizona desert. Sitting on the patio and just watching them, with no expectations, that's my joy especially when the other world, the one I can't avoid, seems too much. Connecting with them, hearing the music they make, that changes my blood pressure and slows my pulse rate. I can go outside, feeling pressured, like a weight is on my chest but soon I am grounded and feeling it all lift away. Sure I'll pick those burdens back up but be better able to handle them when I do.

These little guys are aware of us as we are of them. We could also be a risk. They have to assess that. It's the nature of their existence. All the photos were taken with a telephoto.

cardinal because black around face


Annie said...

Love the pics! Could you tell me what the critters are called? I recognize the mourning dove but the rest are new to me. Is that a grouse of some kind? Is the last one a sparrow?

Rain Trueax said...

the last one is I believe a vireo. The one above it a cactus wren. The ones with red are cardinals. The daddy, who is a brilliant red, is around but he is so fast. We might've gotten a picture of him yesterday but haven't checked the card. The adorable rodent is a chipmunk.

Rain Trueax said...

And turns out the first guy is a Harris' Antelope Squirrel. I wondered about the chipmunk because of the tail but then didn't know some squirrels also had the stripes :)

Annie said...

Yes the squirrel looks like a chipmunk but not exactly. We have Red Squirrels here, no stripes. The female cardinal is very striking, we have cardinals here but they look a little different. Beak is orange and there's not so much red, more a pinky-brown. I've not seen the local female cardinals with their crests up so high, but I don't think they have red in them.

Rain Trueax said...

Now I am not sure she was a cardinal but maybe Pyrrhuloxia. Both have red males but the more parrot like beak and red around the face is pyrrhuloxia and the black around the face Northern Cardinal. I am confused. Today we also had a black bird with a crown, which is another unpronounceable bird that starts with a P. And we have our bird book out there and still confused