Riding on the Rail by J.G. Saxe









Riding on the Rail 

by J.G. Saxe

Singing through the forests, rattling over ridges,
Shooting under arches, rumbling over bridges,
Whizzing through the mountains, buzzing o'er the vale,—
Bless me! this is pleasant, riding on the rail!

Men of different stations in the eye of Fame,
Here are very quickly coming to the same;
High and lowly people, birds of every feather,
On a common level, traveling together!

Gentlemen in shorts, blooming very tall;
Gentlemen at large, talking very small;
Gentlemen in tights, with a loosish mien;
Gentlemen in gray, looking very green!

Gentlemen quite old, asking for the news;
Gentlemen in black, with a fit of blues;
Gentlemen in claret, sober as a vicar;
Gentlemen in tweed, dreadfully in liquor!

Stranger on the right looking very sunny,
Obviously reading something very funny.
Now the smiles are thicker—wonder what they mean?
Faith, he's got the Knickerbocker Magazine!

Stranger on the left, closing up his peepers;
Now he snores again, like the Seven Sleepers;
At his feet a volume gives the explanation,
How the man grew stupid from "association"!

Ancient maiden lady anxiously remarks
That there must be peril 'mong so many sparks;
Roguish-looking fellow, turning to the stranger,
Says 'tis his opinion she is out of danger!

Woman with her baby, sitting vis a vis;
Baby keeps a-squalling, woman looks at me;
Asks about the distance—says 'tis tiresome talking,
Noises of the cars are so very shocking!

Market woman, careful of the precious casket,
Knowing eggs are eggs, tightly holds her basket;
Feeling that a smash, if it came, would surely
Send her eggs to pot rather prematurely.

Singing through the forests, rattling over ridges,
Shooting under arches, rumbling over bridges,
Whizzing through the mountains, buzzing o'er the vale,—
Bless me! this is pleasant, riding on the rail!