The Smell of Smoke

 The smell of smoke, the loud hiss of steam
Images of a 2-6-4 hurtle through boyhood dream
Wheels clatter on points, the steam whistle blows
The fireman stokes furnace; drivers face all aglow
Trees beckon as countryside flashes from sight
Children playing, stop and scream with delight
So many memories of journeys by steam
Old man closes eyes and hugs boyhood dream

Where did they go, those Great Western trains
Each with its own particular name
There was Mallard, Scotsman, even Elaine
Stopping all stations or a fast through train
Spitting hot water and hissing with steam
Driver and fireman working hard as a team
Clickety-clacking along miles of line
Alas, they’re no more, a great memory in time

Raymond B. Stone