A Tough Old Bridge

The train came through a tunnel, down to town
across a bridge that spans the Little Red–
a bridge of steel that reaches bank to bank
above the river flowing fast and deep
enough for young and old to dive and swim.

The angry flood of nineteen eighty-two
bear-clawed and pulled apart the cobbled streets
and quickly claimed an ancient concrete pier.
The boiling waters scarred a path so wide
the river steamed onto the shore and caused
the bridge’s portal to float free in stream.

But strong-willed men rebuilt the broken link,
restored the aged bridge–a tough, old bridge.

The railway bridge at edge of my hometown
no longer hears an engine’s chugging sound,
no longer shakes with jar of clacking wheels.
Old timers spin a thousand tales and more
of whistle blaring near the mountain bend.

Though trains no longer cross the Little Red,
the bridge has earned the honor to remain.

by Freeda Baker Nichols

Train Bridge at Shirley, Arkansas

From my files . . . of 1978

From my Journal: dated 3 July 1978

Still, no thoughts come to me.  I am tired of waiting. It seems I never will succeed in writing. Once, I held high my hope and desire to write.  Now, it all seems useless.  If I do succeed, what happiness will it bring to me . . . or to anyone? —Freeda Baker Nichols

Hemingway’s advice makes it sound easy. Write one true sentence, he said.
What about you? Do you find writing to be an easy task? Or does it seem to be a tough assignment at times?

A New Photo and an Old Journal Entry

woodpecker in flight

Red-bellied woodpecker in flight as a blue jay waits his turn at the feeder.

Ten Things I Want To Do Again

1.  Swim

2.  Picnic

3. Talk to my best friend, Margie.

4. Walk along the River Walk in San Antonio, Texas.

5.  Sit at the dining table with my husband and our children, talking, laughing, remembering good times we have had.

6. Listen when my husband or one of the children praise me or thank me for some small thing I’ve done.

7.  Go to Church.

8. Visit friends.

9.  Travel.

10. Walk in the woods.

What ten things would you like to do again?

Even A Poet Can Wish

This Bluebird landed on the broken water gauge which is shaped like a Hummingbird. And tonight, this poet is at a loss for words for a poem to complement the picture. This Bluebird is one of my favorite birds this summer. His and Mrs. Bluebird’s first hatchlings have flown the nest. The parent birds are still nesting.  In time, their second little family will hatch and also leave the nest. I wish I could keep these adorable bluebirds here in my yard throughout the four seasons. I know that is not possible. But even a poet with no words can wish.bluebird on rain gauge