September 28, 2006


The sound of the lumbering freight breaks the silence of a dark night punctuated only by the occasional yap of a dog in the far distance barking at shadows. The hypnotic sound of click clack, click, clack made by the steel wheels rolling over the railroad ties resonates against the deep foliage creeping close to the railroad bed but no match for the massive steel carrier of cargo. The trains hundred connected pieces running smoothly over rails that glisten in the moonlight. Rails buffed shiny by the friction and weight of this almost extinct part of our past. The train, if it could talk to us, would be reticent to boast, but rightly proud of its contributions to mans inextinguishable need to move, to explore, and to change. Yet it would know that mans need for more speed has been won by carriers that are not landlocked, but can fly over the mountains that the train once had to conquer one mountaintop after another. Yet on dark nights such as this, men of a certain age, watching and listening as the huge behemoth of his youth rolls by can’t help it if a tear forms in the corner of his eye as the whistle fades in the distance. Train and man unwilling to let go, unwilling to take that next step that eradicates all those lovely memories.

© jim kittelberger 2006

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Beautifully written! I can almost feel the vibrations in the earth as the train rumbles by. It definitely is a trip down memory lane.

Ray S. Crowe