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The Little Rock Train Depot

About the size of three city blocks

standing diagonal toward the business section of downtown

and obliquely towards the capital building.

Buff brick colored station with ornate carvings,

fountains and archways at the main entrance,

extensive plaster molding, 24-foot ceilings –

take a deep breath and get your bearings.

Three floors of seating along the far end,

a turret, and clock-house on the other.

Brightly painted signs directing –

directing toward baggage, express,

or freight on the ground floor.

Loud clanging from loading docks on the south

where men with sweat-stained shirts

and disproportionally sized biceps work–

work to ready crates of green bananas

and engine parts for staged cargo cars.

Cargo cars that will eventually take all to final destinations,

farmers crops from the Midwest

wheat, corn, and soybeans

stored in open freight cars at the roundabout.

Trailers of green lumber from forests of Arkansas and Missouri

out towards the edge of the shipping dock,

waiting for their engine to be assigned.

The boxcars filled with ore and coal

from mines following the trailers.

Each foreman called over the other

coordinating, and speaking the language of the rails

so departure times are dependably held.

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