In Peace and Gratitude

By Sojourner Kincaid Rolle

(Near Painted Cave)

In a perfect world,
trees grow straight up—
limbs lifted in perennial worship. 

At Pulpit Rock, 

beneath a solitary pew, 

a tarantula resides 

praising the round world. 

A lizard, lone like me, 

sunning on a solitary boulder. 

Purple profusions grow wild here— 

spawned by an invisible philanthropist. 

grafted onto rocky terrain 

Not without sound 

avians flitter in solitude 

above our proud wandering. 

Centuries of ancestral footsteps 

foretell our own destiny. 

Lo’ the sleek manzanita 

apothecary to the realm— 

keeper of the species. 

Caretakers and dandelions in residence 

 among the trees and rocky nooks, 

‘long the meandering Marie Ignacio Creek.

Sojourner Kincaid Rolle is a poet, playwright, environmental educator and peace activist. She served as Santa Barbara’s Poet Laureate from 2015-2017. Her books include Mellow Yellow Global Umbrella, Common Ancestry, and Black Street: Poems. Rolle has led workshops through her Song of Place Poetry Project since 1997. Also by this poet: "Circle of Painted Stones (at La Casa de Maria)" and "In Peace and Gratitude."