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The Locomotive and the Snow-flakes



What can slow the mighty locomotive that appears all powerful. Not a cannon, not a giant, not an army. Accoarding to Portsmouth poet Charles Brewster, the enemy of the train is the snowflake. It may look small and live only briefly, but there are strength in numbers.




VISIT: Brewster's Rambles

Read more about this poem and another railroad poem written by a New Hampshire poet and see pictures of local train wrecks.

SEE PHOTO: Train in Winter

Train Wreck pix / Portsmouth Public LIbrary

The Locomotive and the Snow-flakes
By Charles W. Brewster

Armed with a giant's mighty strength, --
My feeblest nerves all brass, --
My sinews, in their devious length,
Strong iron muscles grasp.

I breathe, -- and lightnings fiercely glare;
I step, -- and thunders roll;
What length of train can ever dare
Impeded me from my goal?

Quick as the speedy thought I fly:
What earthly power can dare
In rapid flight with me to vie,
Or tithe of burden bear?

I glory in unequalled might, --
Of strength, where rests such power?
I dare earth's legions to a fight!
I'd scorn all in that hour!

His wide-spread nostrils, highly steamed,
A vapor slight did bear;
In modest cloud a moment gleamed,
Then disappeared in air.

Unheeded in its upward flight,
The pearl drops floated high,
Till in new robes of downy white
They marshalled in the sky.

. . . . . .

"Did'st hear our generators boast?"
A snow-flake, whispering, said ;
"Come, let us, though a puny host,
Attack the mighty steed!"

"I'm nothing more," a flake replied ;
"And can I dare condemn
That mighty power which has defied
The strength, the skill of men?"

"We need your influence, one and all!"
Was now the stirring cry ;
"Our union is the despot's fall !"
The puny flakes reply.

The flakes then dropped in order down,
So small and feathery light,
They raised no e'en suspicion's frown,
O'er carpet spread so white.

The steam is raised, -- the courser raves,
For flakes his feet have bound !
He strains each nerve ; in vain he braves :
A match at last is found !

In voice of wisdom snow-flakes speak :
"May man this semblance see, --
United effort nerves the weak,
And gives the victory."

ANOTHER POEM by Charles W. Brewster


From "Poets of Portsmouth," Joseph Foster, Portsmouth, 1865



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