Image for the poem train ride

train ride

cross-country journey on the tracks
[No. 8 from The Children’s Collection]
“Neither a wise man nor a brave man lies down on the tracks of
history to wait for the train of the future to run over him.”
—Dwight D. Eisenhower
♫chu-ku-tu-ku / tu-ku-tu-ku
chu-ku-tu-ku / tu-ku-tu-ku
chu-ku-tu-ku / tu-ku-tu-ku
chu-ku-tu-ku / tu-ku-tu-ku♫

round the mountainside the engine comes,
hi-hat cymbals lighting up the drums;
at the bog walk tunnel she dissolves;
at the latter end she re-evolves.
dreary cattle grazing near her tracks
bear the weight of egrets on their backs,
wire-fenced to keep them off the path,
lest the train encounters railroad wrath.
comes another tunnel, as the earth
swallows up the train and then gives birth
on the other side, where snakes the calm  
of the healing rio cobre balm.
through the catadupa hills she whines,
puffing smoke at branches with wild-pines;
soon, she passes through an open gate,
proud to make the highway traffic wait.
finally, she screeches to a halt,
late as usual—perfect to a fault!
gushing from her bowels the madding crowd,
destination screams raucous and loud.
everyone aspires to be set free
from the harness of captivity;
yet, a train, freed from her iron tracks,
suffers death by railroad paradox.
♫chu-ku-tu-ku / tu-ku-tu-ku
chu-ku-tu-ku / tu-ku-tu-ku
chu-ku-tu-ku / tu-ku-tu-ku
chu-ku-tu-ku / tu-ku-tu-ku♫

© Copyright 2023 December 11
by Clyve A. Bowen♫
Written by cabcool
All writing remains the property of the author. Don't use it for any purpose without their permission.
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