Jolting and jogging and shunting and stop.
Crawling and tilting and sprinting and stop.
The gilded-age rails are fixing to rot
And to judge by the rolling, so is the stock.
The train whistles progress, but the points are all shot:
Two hours at the border, and stop, stop, stop, stop.
To the West Adirondacks; to the east just a mire.
There is beauty here of Arcadian kind,
But the route is industrial, brutal, and wild.
A river, a bridge, a ubiquitous flag.
Eleven hours of sidings, and freight trains and drag.
We yawn through New York, creeping or stalled
In a chariot of steel, obesity withal.
Past Plattsburgh, Westport, Fort Edward-Glen Falls.
Through Schenectady, Hudson, Poughkeepsie we trawl.
A river, a bridge, a vertiginous sight.We pull into Penn and escape with the night.