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Returning home on the Flying Scotsman 1983



Wrapped securely within your liveried green

Refined golden-arched nameplate highlights your pedigree,

London North Eastern returning home

Non-stop, Kings Cross to Diesel City

Clackety Click, Clackety Click, Clackety Click

Passing by Highbury, the Arsenal

through the long Potters Bar tunnel

Where pressure causes your ears to pop

Travelling quicker northward, abandoning the ‘Smoke,’

Clackety Click, Clackety Click, Clackety Click

Country air chills flushing my cheeks red

Too close to the door’s open window,

The many-faceted shades of country green

merge in blinding speed to just one hue

Clackety Click, Clackety Click, Clackety Click

I get bearings from station name plaques that whizz by

No sooner has one station pinpointed my location

When accompanied by Doppler’s sound effect, another hurtles past

Stevenage, Hitchen, Biggleswade, Sandy, St Neots, Huntingdon.

Clackety Click, Clackety Click, Clackety Click

North, straight flight, javelin like

Soon I recognise vistas. I’m nearly home.

Abandoned brick pits awaiting development

Hapless football ground, KFC, Cathedral,

Clackety Click, Clackety Click, Clackety Click

Slowly, then finally, we come to rest

Handle gripped, determinedly turned

I step onto the raised tarmacked platform.

Ticket in hand for inspection.

Peeeeeeeeeeeeeeep blows the conductor

Clackety, Click, Clackety, Click, Clackety, Click

Heads turn as this famous steam chariot

slowly pulls from our station, bound for York,

Billowed smoke and hot air, follow in a hazed wake

Wheeled Hermes, I thank you for my safe return.

Clackety Click, Clackety Click, Clackety Click


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