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(Nothing on the page but a Nine Freight in performance)


Slowly - ever so slowly - inching on our way;

Destination Whitby, vivid Autumn day.

Scenery magnificent, weather matching too,

Clouds of alto cirrus, sky of china blue.


Picking up momentum now, further down the line,

Engine snorting like a mare in steady 4/4 time.

Leaning from a window, moorland coasting by,

Nigel Gresley out in front, cinder in your eye.


Stopping every now and then gives us chance to see

Railway architecture preserved so carefully.

Enthusiasts and visitors milling on the station

Enjoying all the spectacle in wondrous fascination.


A chance to get a close-up as it is Whitby-bound

Drinking the intoxicant heady smells and sound.

Hissing steam and choking smoke combined with pungent oil

A living beast of burden, easy with its toil.


Excitement on the platform doubles in the ranks

The downtrain is arriving and is pulled by saddle tanks.

The livery of coaches maintains this classic theme,

With carriages resplendent in crimson and in cream.


Calling off at Levisham, Heartbeat’s Goathland too,

Through Grosmont, Sleights and Ruswarp, to Whitby we are due.

Mystical, historical, town of jet and sailors

Captain Cook and Dracula, fleets of Whitby whalers.


Slowing by the estuary, hiss of pistons sing

To River Esk in Whitby from Beck in Pickering.

Anticipate arriving, outward journey done,

And pleasant realisation that the homeward trip’s to come.




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John Coopey

Sun 18th Mar 2018 23:23

I may well, Colin. My "Greatest Hits Vol III" is due out in 2026.

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John Coopey

Mon 12th Mar 2018 22:16

Thanks, Kevin. I did it once before at Donny where it was suggested I slow it down and speed it up several times to represent the several stations. That’s a bit too clever for me, though!

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kJ Walker

Mon 12th Mar 2018 19:54

Nice as a written piece, but it's your performance that brings it to life. 👍


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John Coopey

Mon 12th Mar 2018 18:23

Thanks, MC. In fairness, it’s not much without it.

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M.C. Newberry

Mon 12th Mar 2018 16:51

Your way of presenting the audio - in rhythm with the words
that describe the journey - is inspired and adds
considerably to the written content. Top decision!

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John Coopey

Mon 12th Mar 2018 12:08

I thought so, Ray. I googled the film to confirm.
The K&WVR is also a cracking ride but I think the NYMR has the edge.

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Mon 12th Mar 2018 10:25

Yes John; I dropped myself in it there! Thinking about the film the K WR has a different scenic aspect than the open moors. All the best.


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John Coopey

Sun 11th Mar 2018 23:55

Douglas and Ray - thanks guys. You're right about the smell, Ray. If they could bottle it as scent they would make a fortune. The Railway Children, though, I'm not so sure. I always thought it was the Keighley and Worth Valley.

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Sun 11th Mar 2018 22:17

Definitely a feel good poem John, Who could resist the hot flush of a proper steam loco, with those wide spaces! Also the line was used for the Railway Children. To think those A4s used to work out of Kings Cross on the long hauls!

I enjoyed the trip thanks. Ray

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Douglas MacGowan

Sun 11th Mar 2018 21:08

I love riding on trains, and this poem neatly shows the reasons why.

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John Coopey

Sun 11th Mar 2018 17:50

Thanks, MC. This is a re-post from 2010 but with the added audio.

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M.C. Newberry

Sun 11th Mar 2018 15:45

Now THIS is deserving of poem of any week - most imaginatively presented and performed - a feast for anyone
who's ever had affection for the days of steam.
You get TWO toots of the whistle for this one JC. Great

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