We never walked the rails, back then.
We walked the country roads,
ventured to a small dump in the woods.
I found a couple of railroad lanterns, there.
They hadn’t held oil for decades.
How I wish I had those relics
my mother later discarded for trash.
From the second floor of that
abandoned farmhouse beside the tracks,
we could look out onto the quarter-mile long
train bridge we didn’t dare to cross for
a view down the valley.
Even then, it was a dinosaur,
torn down not many years later.
For me, those adventures made
farm life almost romantic.
But then, helping in the fields,
chores in the cow barn
were just part of our three day visits,
oblivious as I was to the daily drudgery of
a young girl in her early teens.
Fast forward to sixteen or seventeen and
you now living in the village,
as we walked past the mill
along an abandoned rail bed,
talking about current music, laughing at
the innuendo of The Lemon Song,
farm life thankfully behind you.
I think back to those visits with cousins,
lanterns, trackless trails and
bridges to nowhere that we survived.
The absence of trains seemed
our common thread, yet
I think of those times when I see trains.
Day Seven of 2016 NaPoWriMo, and a stream of (past) consciousness.
The top image is from the Allegany County Historical Society and the bottom photo is one I took, around 1980. The bridge was 1,922 feet in length and 155 feet in height.