Walkin on Air


A bright sunny day, I'd say
birds frolic high in the sky, eggs fry
breakfast is ready.

Living in a railroad shack
seven kids to raise near railroad-track,
take what you can get.

Sometimes when we fate abet,
this morning I shall never forget,
death drops by for luck.

Billy-Jean is a good boy
plays by himself, with his homemade toy
sits on the sidetrack.

The rest are mad for cricket,
use the main track to prop their wicket;
told them it's not safe.

Anyway, still they will play
nothing happens ever, no never;
in spite of the trains

that come fast around the bend,
the tall gorge-wall buffing out the sound:
a mute ghost, almost.

Today's the local town match,
my six kids can fifty bucks make
if they take the prize;

need the money that's for sure.
No issue, they have never yet lost,
breadwinners they are.

All dote we on Billy-Jean
cute, sweet, obedient, innocent,
never harms a fly;

plays on the sidetrack only
even thought sometimes it is lonely:
he plays and prays there always.

Game is on, spectators watch;
stationmaster, town-folks are engrossed,
no one notices the time

pass or see the train rounding
the bend so fast it'll never stop
in time to avoid

the competing cricketers
who should not have been there on the track;
what could stationmaster do?

"Switch the track, yes! switch the track!"
God only knows if time would suffice,
I saw my kids frozen stiff:

I jump to push the lever,
Billy-Jean looks up and smiles, waves,
all is slow-motion.

Why sacrifice innocence,
the obedient who did no wrong?
The six and the ogling throng:

I, they remain and again
remember forever: just to sit
right may be so wrong...

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