Transister Beneath My Pillow.............

Such a complicated world today
the realities aren't enlightening
Dialing in the radio was a treat
today would be more frightening

From the age of eight or nine I kept
a radio beneath a pillow at night
The rolling of the distant radio waves
made everything seem alright

A friend in the darkness a connection
to life dreams
Oh no the battery is dying a weaker
signal it seems

The scent of heat in the speakers
what magic brings out the tunes
Turn it down as low as can be
don't wake them in the other rooms


A station in Virginia where in the
heck is that
Another one in boston...... WRKO's
where it's at

Sitting around in the morning my Fathers
elbows on his knees
Listening to the old songs .......
a little news if you please

Mother humming in the kitchen to
an old dance tune from her teens
Yes , the radio.... a savior then for many
a sound as sweet dreams





Comments 34 comments

www.lookseenow profile image

www.lookseenow 5 years ago

I remember when radio was as infant as today’s IT T V did not come along until the 50’s what did d we do without TV? We all gathered around the yellow dial, listening to the actors and it was just the same in our imaginations as seeing it. Each night we had memorized what comes on and where and what time.


Paradise7 profile image

Paradise7 5 years ago from Upstate New York

My mom remembers life without TV, clustering around the radio, listening to "The Shadow Knows" and "Fibber McGee and Molly". She says there was nothing like it for pure entertainment.

Me, I had my transistor radio beneath my pillow, too, listening to top 40 hits.

Lovely memories, thank you.


www.lookseenow profile image

www.lookseenow 5 years ago

Don't forget Amos & Andy!


Poetic Fool 5 years ago

I did the same thing as a boy late at night. With the radio under the pillow I listened to stations in far away states that seemed like another world to me. It's amazing how far those stations could reach at night. I fell asleep most nights to that radio. It was soothing and reassuring, I guess. I still like to fall asleep with the radio on. It started a life long love of radio. Thanks for bringing back the memories. Well done!


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Lookseenow, To tell the truth , I was born in 54 and didnt have much TV or radio at all until the mid 60s and then not much at all. the big difference was "the great outdoors" for us as kids. Even in high school I wasn't much for TV. And I turned out OK.! LOL...:-} I am sad for kids today : they miss out on so much because of being tied in to the electronics.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Paradise , Yes it was great! ..I didn't even watch alot of TV so I feel blessed!.....:-}


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Poetic Fool , i remember well going to sleep with it on, and the dissappointment in the am with a dead battery!.....:-}


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

Radio was magical, and I was spellbound. In those days, TV was only on for around three hours a day, and most people didn't have one anyway.

As a boy, I used to turn the switch on the big old console radio and then run around to the back where I would peer through the slits into the dark confines and watch the filaments light up in their mysterious way. It was like watching a field of red stars being born in the blackness. It all smelled mysteriously of ozone and hot dust.

Moments later, I was rewarded by the sound of atmospheric static and various whistling reverberations, all of which gradually gave way to the magic sound of voices from faraway places.

I was recently given my parent's old 1940's era radio by a neighbor who had kept it all these years. I used to listen to my kid programs on it in the afternoons after school. To by absolute astonishment and joy, I discovered that it still works!

And it still glows like a field of red stars inside when you turn it on!


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Will Star ,You are a lucky man , an old radio! I wish I could find one. My neighbor has an old tube tester, ever seen one?....:-}


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

"My neighbor has an old tube tester, ever seen one?"

My first job was radio repair on Saturdays at Hutchin's radio and TV repair. I ran a tube tester more times than I can count. I was thirteen.

Tube testers were actually very unreliable, so most repairmen had a full selection of tubes, and if there was any doubt, we simply plugged in a new tube and tried it.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

No kidding Will , I guess youre age is showing! LOL.:-]


Hyphenbird profile image

Hyphenbird 5 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

Oh the memories this brings back to me. I also had a transistor radio and kept it on my pillow at night. The weekend brought the Grand Ole Opry and those angelic voices singing of pain and loss. Weekdays we given over to Wolfman Jack. I can honestly say, :"were the day."

You wrote another memory with style and beauty.


Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 5 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

I used to have my transistor radio under my pillow too :) That radio was attached to me...


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Hyphenbird , I remember as a teen , mid sixties, Pop music played from 8 pm to 10 pm on a local station, can you imagine. And then .......static! Thanks and Hugs.;-}


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Uninvited Writer , Yes ! a transister radio soulmate!.....:-}


Majadez profile image

Majadez 5 years ago from Johannesburg, South Africa

A great poem and reminder.

Although I was born in the age of TV and computers, I always loved radio... The beauty of it is that we would cherish the songs more because you wouldn't know when would be the next time you'd hear it. Unless you bought the record/tape/cd, of course. Even those formats had their limitations and something special about them. Now, although it is a great thing that we have so much abundance of information and music, it sort of seems to deplete that special quality to it so we take it for granted.

If you want to hear a song, why listen to the radio? Just log online and download it!


always exploring profile image

always exploring 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

The radio has always been a big part of my life. I was lucky, my Mother loved music, so the radio was rarely turned off. I grew up listening to the Grand Ole Opry, i love country music, George Jones is my favorite, but i also love Elvis, Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Elton John, i could go on for ever, oh, i forgot Bette Midler. Thank's for the memories,( Bob Hope )


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Majadez , I remember all of the music of my youth, I seldon saw the bands themselves until years later and even now. A radio to me was like my own personal relationship with music. Just the dark, the music and my imagination!...... Nice to see you!:-}


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Hey ~Always Exploring , Yes it was the best wasn't it! I remember music to my earliest days. And still , I love it. George Straight , Merle Haggard, remember M M M M Mel T-Tillis.? What a voice for singing. Bette has got to be the most Talented of all!...:-}


always exploring profile image

always exploring 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

I agree. My favorite of her's is ' The Rose ' HaHa Tillis, funny.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

But Tillis had such a great voice for ballads, "Send me down to Tuscon"...and how about his daughter Pam?..:-}


Hyphenbird profile image

Hyphenbird 5 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

Both Tillis crooners are glorious. Spilled Perfume by Pam makes me cry and she is such a talented writer as well as singer.


Cardisa profile image

Cardisa 5 years ago from Jamaica

I'm not a radio person, but I can relate. I kept books under my pillow! I would wake up in the middle of the night and read with a flashlight.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Hyphenbird , I have gotten away from radio over the last few years because of the commercialism , adds, noise...and the quality of music as well. But I still love my old favorites from youth. Gordon lightfoot , my fav, and celtic music for the most part ,Tom Rush , ougie Maclean....Be well my dear.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Cardisa , Yes , the long summer nights with the window open, a bare lightbulb and a stash of books. And my radio, who could need more.....:-}


ExoticHippieQueen 5 years ago

I kept a transistor under my pillow as a teenager! Now, I have a CD Walkman with a Chicago radio station, WGN, droning in my ears. Steve and Johnnie talk all night and provide me with the boredom I need to get some sleep, like someone talking in the next room? I don't mean to imply that they are boring, actually they are incredibly interesting and some nights, I stay awake too long listening to them!


Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 5 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

I was in heaven when the first Sony walkman came out :)

I used to always fall asleep to the radio, can't do it anymore though.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Exotic , It's all good ! What works....works! that used to be my problem , now I read myself to sleep and wonder what and how I used to lie awake all night. Be well...:-}


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Uninvited Writer , Me too dear, Always the music played!:-}


Francesca27 profile image

Francesca27 5 years ago from Hub Page

We must be the same age because I did the same thing. Sometimes on a hot summer night, I would open the window and sing a song that I listened to on the radio a few hundred times... that was, of course, when people actually had a great singing voice and the words fit my life perfectly, at that time. I will have to follow you now and look forward to more memories from the past... I'm counting on you to keep those memories coming!


september girl 5 years ago

I use to love listening to my Momma's transistor radio as a teen. But, was never allowed to keep it under my pillow. Loved the poem, brought back a lot of great memories. thanks!


saddlerider1 profile image

saddlerider1 5 years ago

Aw yes the sweet little transistor radio that came in various colors. I had a wire extending from mine with a metal clip that I would clip to my metal bed post in order to pick up a clearer signal. I would lay it beside me on my pillow and listen while I drifted off to sleep. Memories are built on these types of things, thanks for bringing one back to me, it was music to my ears.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

september girl, Alright ! I am glad that this touched you! Memories are the best you know!....:-}


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Saddlerider , Memories are so attractive to our scychy ,no? I wouldn't give them up for anthing Thank you Sir Saddlerider!

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working