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Updated on March 5, 2012

By: Wayne Brown

The year is 1879, the town is Abilene, so says the sign

Main street a bustling; folks waiting for the train, it’s time!

Then in the distance we hear her mighty struggling chug

Jerking and spitting into the station she will steaming tug



My young brother Luke and I stand staring at the sight

Seeing the train is a favorite, a come-to-town delight

Luke’s got a penny he has placed there upon the rail

If the train flattens it out, what a story he’ll have to tell



Then there it comes, topping that eastern ridge rise

Belching steam, large and black, a sight for our eyes

As it comes nearer to the station, the ground is a shake

Wheels and gears a turnin’, oh the noise that it makes



Luke and I are grinning’ just giddy with all this fuss

The engineer leans out the window waving at both of us

We can hardly hear ourselves as the steam belches out

The world is shaking and there’s chaos all about



Then the mighty engine comes to a screeching stop

The doors roll open and out the passengers pop

There’s mail and cargo in the rail cars at the back

And Luke’s copper is somewhere down on that track



The stationmaster is upon the station water tank

He swings the spout around with a mighty yank

Into the black locomotive, the water will flow

Fire turns it into steam and gives the train its go



Passenger get on and off and the cargo changes hands

Soon this monster is loaded and ready to go again

The fires are stoked and the steam is starting to rise

Soon she’ll be up and gone, distant from our eyes



The big black locomotive begins to make its mighty chug

The rails cars start a-movin’ as the power begins to tug

Slowly, then faster, she’s building up a steamy head

Picking up speed little by little on the steely stead



The noise trails off and the shaking stops as the train departs

The stationmaster marks the time upon his station charts

And me and Luke, we search the rails for that one little copper

There it is, all flattened out, and golly, it’s a whopper!



We love it when we come to town and get away from the farm

The town has loads of excitement, lots of fun, and charm

But the best of it all is when we hear that town clock chime

And we look and realize that once again, it’s Train Time!


©Copyright WBrown2010. All Rights Reserved.



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    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @SilverGenes...well, I'll have to say this one shot up the charts pretty fast. Listening your comments, I am understanding why. Wow...can you get me a job! LOL! WB

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      You paint a picture with images, sounds, smells, heat- and we are all there. It's like a time machine. I wish it were a little more like this now. What a wonderful thing for kids to remember. Thank you for another magical trip!

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @valeriebelew...Thank you Valerie. I just got up on Saturday with that subject on my mind and it all seemed to work out! Thanks for the thumbs up! WB

    • valeriebelew profile image


      8 years ago from Metro Atlanta, GA, USA

      Excellent little poem about two young boys back in the days of steam ran trains. Voting up and awesome. (:v

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @saddlerider1...a fun time for the kids...just like the county fair! Thanks, Ken. WB

    • saddlerider1 profile image


      8 years ago

      Yes I remember doing the very same thing. Going over to the tracks by the stock yards, laying our pennies down and waiting for the chug a lug of the incoming locomotive to squash our pennies nice and shiny. Go and show them off to our friends and watch their eyes open wide. Those were fun moments, thanks for refreshing my memories.

    • dabeaner profile image


      8 years ago from Nibiru

      Dirty, hot, noisy -- and WONDERFUL!

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @dallas9344...Thank you...I just tried to see it through the eyes and excitement of a child and it worked! Thanks much for your nice comments! WB

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 

      8 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Nostagia. You are a great word-smith. You 27 letters and arranged them into a moving scene...

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @BPop...Could you send that compiler by the house when you see him? LOL...That would be fun! WB

      @Pamela99...Yes, I thought seeing it through a child's eyes would add to the excitement! So glad you liked it! WB

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      8 years ago from Sunny Florida

      I love this poems I was fascinated by trains as a child and I can only imagine the excitement in the 1800's. Your poem was very good.

    • breakfastpop profile image


      8 years ago

      I love your poetry Wayne. I see a compilation of poetry in your future.

    • Wayne Brown profile imageAUTHOR

      Wayne Brown 

      8 years ago from Texas

      @Eileen Hughes...Thank you so much for the read and comments. I am glad that I could bring back that memory for you. WB

    • Eileen Hughes profile image

      Eileen Hughes 

      8 years ago from Northam Western Australia

      That was great it took me back to when us kids used to stand on the wellington st bridge over the rail bridge in Perth and the smell of the steam was so different and hard to explain but I reckon I would still know that smell today.

      They were great the old steam trains. Thanks for reminding me great yarn


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