When Joaquin Miller first purchased “The Hights,” which after his death became Joaquin Miller Park in Oakland, the hills had been clearcut. He planted every tree in the park, most native, some exotic, and today, school children visit there to learn about the native species of the East Bay environment and watersheds. The park is home to Friends of Sausal Creek, a native plant society that works to restore the original ecosystem.
Joaquin Miller (went walkin’) imagines the poet wandering through a pristine habitat of red-tailed hawks and white-tailed deer, enjoying the native grasses, trees, and flowers. The song contains a bit of Oakland history (the redwood trees were used to build San Francisco), symbolism (California’s golden poppy) and science (the watershed that leads to the Bay), all in the romantic spirit of poetic observance. The call-and-response structure of the song makes it engaging and fun for children to sing along with and perform.
Listen to some kids sing it
(You’ll be humming it all day!)
Joaquin Miller (went walkin’) was the opening act at the first annual Dimond Celebration on June 23, 2006!
“This is wonderful!!!! Thank you so much for doing this. We will definitely use it and pass it on.” —Amiko Mayeno, Audobon Society
Life Among the Modocs: read it and swoon!
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