Tuesday, August 21, 2007
WILATU #99 - the sound of a train whistle in the distance at night
When I hear that long lonesome train whistle calling out to me, you may think my mind drifts to thoughts of rambling. No, no. My mind finds its way back home when late at night as I lay in bed I could hear that sound carrying through the crisp summer air and sounding throughout the valley. The tracks followed the banks of the Ohio River. Bringing in coal, and taking out steel. Two short blasts and one long. Miles away, but they carried. And in my mind that train went all the way to Istanbul, because anywhere outside of that valley was far, far away. Like a giant ghost it would wail in the night giving its warning. The chirp of crickets and the rustle of leaves and just loud enough so you could tell what it was, that train plowing through the night. Calling like an owl. Letting me know the world was a little bigger than my backyard. Letting the world know that it was moving, and it wasn't going to stop. You don't get this when you're stopped at a railroad crossing in your car. Then the train is loud and overbearing. It is a herd of elephants in a single-file stampede. But at night, from a distance... it is poetry.