BANNER MOUNTAIN GIRL # 25 “A Tough Old Bridge”

Train Bridge at Shirley, Arkansas

A Tough Old Bridge

The railway bridge at edge of my hometown
no longer hears an engine’s  chugging hiss,
no longer shakes with jar of clacking wheels.
Old-timers spin tall tales of how they miss
the whistle blaring near the mountain bend.
Though trains no longer cross the Little Red,
the bridge has earned the honor to remain–
iron-clad above the restless river’s bed.
The swimming hole beneath the overpass
attracts both old and young from off the ridge.
The local preachers hold baptisms there
in sight of that old tough and rustic bridge.

© copyright, Freeda Baker Nichols

A Tough, Old Bridge

Train Bridge at Shirley

A Tough, Old Bridge

The railway bridge at edge of my hometown
no longer hears an engine’s chugging hiss,
no longer shakes with jar of clacking wheels.
Old timers spin tall tales of how they miss
the whistle blaring near the mountain bend.
Though trains no longer cross the Little red,
the bridge has earned the honor to remain–
iron-clad above the restless river’s bed.
The swimming hole beneath the overpass
attracts both old and young from off the ridge.
The local preachers hold baptisms there
in sight of that old tough and rustic bridge.

© 2015 Freeda Baker Nichols

A Poem, a Photo, an Iris Silky White

Archey Fork Park 30 Apr 2006 004

An Iris Bouquet

In waters of the Little Red
a gift swirls in suspense–
pretty present for a maiden–
selected by a daring prince.

At a crossing near the rapids
where canoes can suddenly spin,
the Prince dropped an Iris bouquet
far below the river’s bend.

The swift current claimed the present
chosen for his mountain queen,
refused then to release it
from the bottom of the stream.

The wild and bubbling current
defied the Prince’s charms
and gripped his darling’s present
tightly in its mighty arms.

Silky white and purple petals–
nurtured in the Ozark suns–
drifting now to far-off places
where the wild Red River runs.

© Freeda Baker Nichols
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