Steel melodies (haibun)

(C) Clr’19 Brockville, On.

Riding on the train from Montreal to Toronto is a long ride but it’s a train and nothing is more comfortable for long rides up to 5 hours.

She was raised in a train town [hog town they called it for the railroad engineers]. Trains passed through her little town a dozen times a day. There were at least six passenger trains that went to Montreal which was about 40 minutes away and too many freight trains that passed, stopped, shunted and road at a snail’s pace every day.  The shunting could wake you up at night sounding like thunder booming in your bedroom…no kidding!

There were freight trains that could hold up the town forever and block streets and prevent people from getting home in time for lunch or home at night in time before curfew…if you had one of those.

Looking back at those days, she considered herself pretty lucky. Her mother would let her and her sister go out weekends and come home when they were ready. She would simply whisper, “I trust you darling.” And THAT killed any mischief they might consider.

So back on this train, she could not get over how comfortable the newer trains were these days. Wow!! So much leg room for an economy class and the seats were leather and sleek…real fancy! What she loved most were the panoramic windows where you could see forever and just stare off in the distance and let your imagination run wild.

She was going to see her family, celebrating her uncle’s 91st birthday today! He was like a dad to her. She had lived with them for a month twenty years ago so she could save first and last month’s rent and found a place less than thirty minutes from her family and fifteen minutes to downtown Toronto. She loved this city. It held so many memories, both good and tough times but still, it was a place she truly grew when she moved here in her mid forties. Now she was just visiting…she would stay in Oakville for a few days to see her family. She would be staying in a B & B just off Lake Ontario.

The rest of her trip would be be in mid-town Toronto in another B & B in the same borough where her dad live the last years before moving on to different dimensions. It would be nice visiting that neighbourhood. She had fond memories of a few places she loved to go dancing not too far from her dad’s complex. His apartment was called ” Montgomery Place” but he joked calling it “Montgomery Morgue” because everyone was over 65 and from the looks of many of the residents, they were well into their late seventies. Many turned in for the night before eight and her dad was a night owl like herself. She wondered if she could stand living in a place like that when life (to her) began after nine at night and ended just before the sun came out the birds started clearing their throats for the day’s concert.

She sat back and looked out at the trees rushing by and allowed time to stand still…

(C) Clr’19

Rumble of the train

Lullaby of her childhood

Mumbling “peace”

(c) Tournesol 31/05/2019

Daily Moments – steel melodies

4 thoughts on “Steel melodies (haibun)

  1. We lived about a block from the tracks in my teen years. A tiny village of about 600 people. Later the small town where we raised our son had trains and car’s changing during the night. Though it was about a mile to the tracks the sound could still be heard.

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    1. It sure does echo especially on summer nights when the windows are open. We lived (in my mom’s and grandmother’s house) about 500 ft from the train tracks and there were about 6 tracks…so lots thunder bolt sounds for sure. As a kid we loved it though!

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