Poetry Forum Areas

Introduce Yourself

New to PoetrySoup? Introduce yourself here. Tell us something about yourself.

Looking for a Poem

Can't find a poem you've read before? Looking for a poem for a special person or an occasion? Ask other member for help.

Writing Poetry

Ways to improve your poetry. Post your techniques, tips, and creative ideas how to write better.

High Critique

For poets who want unrestricted constructive criticism. This is NOT a vanity workshop. If you do not want your poem seriously critiqued, do not post here. Constructive criticism only. PLEASE Only Post One Poem a Day!!!

How do I...?

Ask PoetrySoup Members how to do something or find something on PoetrySoup.


The Scottish Engineer

by
 With eyes that searched in the dark, 
Peering along the line, 
Stood the grim Scotsman, Hector Clark, 
Driver of "Forty-nine".
And the veldt-fire flamed on the hills ahead, Like a blood-red beacon sign.
There was word of a fight to the north, And a column too hardly pressed, So they started the Highlanders forth.
Heedless of food or rest.
But the pipers gaily played, Chanting their fierce delight, And the armoured carriages rocked and swayed.
Laden with men of the Scots Brigade, Hurrying up to the fight, And the grim, grey Highland engineer Driving them into the night.
Then a signal light glowed red, And a picket came to the track.
"Enemy holding the line ahead; Three of our mates we have left for dead, Only we two got back.
" And far to the north through the still night air They heard the rifles crack.
And the boom of a gun rang out, Like the sound of a deep appeal, And the picket stood in doubt By the side of the driving-wheel.
But the engineer looked down, With his hand on the starting-bar, "Ride ye back to the town, Ye know what my orders are, Maybe they're wanting the Scots Brigade Up on those hills afar.
"I am no soldier at all, Only an engineer; But I could not bear that the folk should say Over in Scotland -- Glasgow way -- That Hector Clark stayed here With the Scots Brigade till the foe was gone, With ever a rail to run her on.
Ready behind! Stand clear! "Fireman, get you gone Into the armoured train -- I will drive her alone; One more trip -- and perhaps the last -- With a well-raked fire and an open blast; Hark to the rifles again!" On through the choking dark, Never a lamp nor a light, Never an engine spark Showing her hurried flight, Over the lonely plain Rushed the great armoured train, Hurrying up to the fight.
Then with her living freight On to the foe she came, And the rides snapped their hate.
And the darkness spouted flame.
Over the roar of the fray The hungry bullets whined, As she dashed through the foe that lay Loading and firing blind, Till the glare of the furnace, burning clear, Showed them the form of the engineer Sharply and well defined.
Through! They are safely through! Hark to the column's cheer! Surely the driver knew He was to halt her here; But he took no heed of the signals red, And the fireman found, when he climbed ahead, There on the door of his engine -- dead -- The Scottish Engineer!

Poem by
Biography | Poems | Best Poems | Short Poems | Quotes | Email Poem - The Scottish EngineerEmail Poem | Create an image from this poem

Poems are below...


Top Andrew Barton Paterson Poems

Analysis and Comments on The Scottish Engineer

Provide your analysis, explanation, meaning, interpretation, and comments on the poem The Scottish Engineer here.