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Thu, 04 Nov 2010
Clickity Clackety, could it be a train, a steam train maybe, or even a canal barge high on an Aquaduct.

Diddilydeedot's Dream-land

WHAT THE TRAIN SANG

By Stephen Southwold

steam train


        Dickie, who is ten, was going away to school for the first time, a long journey of a hundred miles. His daddy saw him safely into the train.

        The guard had promised to keep an eye on him, but after the train started, Dickie looked out of the window and saw that the guard's van was ever so far off down the train.  He wondered how the guard was going to keep an eye on him all that way off, and then he looked up to the ceiling of the carried and noticed the lamp there.

    "I expect," he said to himself, "he comes along the top of the carriage and looks through ever now and then."

      On and on went the train, out into the open country, past green fields in which cows and sheep and horses were steadily munching the grass. Dickie thought what a long way the school was from his home, and he began to feel a little unhappy.

      "It's ever so far," he whispered to himself. And then a queer thing happened. The train began to sing. "Ever so far, ever so far, ever so far," it sang in a most doleful voice.

A tear trickled down Dickie's face and ran into the corner of his mouth. It tasted so salty that it made him think of the splendid times he had had splashing about in the sea only a week ago.  But even that did not stay his tears, down they came faster and faster. He pressed his hot face against the window pane. Then he sat up quickly. A red, tear-stained face was staring at him from outside the carriage.

      "Oh, the baby !" he said, and he laughed. Of course, it was the reflection of himself. But the train must have seen it too, "Oh the baby ! Oh the baby ! Oh the baby ! it sang over and over again, as if it too was laughing.

      Dickie stamped on the floor with his feet. "I won't cry !" he said loudly.

And there was that queer old train again : "I won't cry , I won't cry, I won't cry," as if it would never cease. And sure enough Dickie didn't cry anymore. And in next to no time at all the train had stopped at the school station.

And when Dickie told me this story, he said that he was coming home for the Christmas holidays the train sang all the way, in the most joyous voice, "Home again, home again, home again, home again !"

 "Now however did the train know ?" he asked.

     But I couldn't tell him. Perhaps you can.

Well what did you think of that little story ? I loved it, but I think maybe the younger children will not remember the noise that the big old steam train made as it went over the points and along the tracks.  I should imagine that there are many children who have never been on a real steam train. They were very noisy and because they burnt coal as fuel and not cleaner petrol they did nothing to help the ozone layer.

Oh but children if you ever get the chance to ride on a steam train and to listen to the sound that you could hear if you really listened well. Here is a little rhyme that I wrote a while ago. I think it might be somewhere on this page. when you say it, make it quick and snappy and you will hear what Dickie heard. Pay special notice to the lines ;    "speeding along - singing this song."

The Talking Train

Tickerty - tack, over the track, 

Far, far away, puffing all day,           

Tickerty - too, hurry up do! 

Trains cannot wait,

Must not be late,

Tickerty - tock, nickerty - nock,

Speeding along,

Singing this song,

Tickerty - tackerty,

Tickerty - nackerty,

Tickerty - tackerty.

Tock! Tock! Tock!

Brilliant xxx Diddilydeedot's Dreamland2008

This is followed by a trip or two on a steam train here in Wales

Posted 19:53

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