*Magnify*
SPONSORED LINKS
Creative fun in
the palm of your hand.
Printed from https://www.Writing.Com/view/1607605
Rated: E · Non-fiction · Biographical · #1607605
A poetic memoir of my father, the Long Beach Pike and a Roller Coaster ... all gone now.
As if in a Dream…..
I remember a seaside town called Long Beach ...
where I was a little girl  ...
         and for one kind carefree moment
                        I had bright stars and rainbows in my eyes ...
Oh I remember so very well ….
        the Great Cyclone Racer by the ocean ...
            and riding the winding tracks with bold souls .. …
                and with sailors holding their  sweethearts tight ….
Clickety clack all the way to the top …
Then diving, rushing,  breathless …. to the bottom
            Then quick …  quick …  fast around the curves …
            The  saltwater mist kissing our faces …
                      as we sailed in grand Red Cars .… 
                          it seemed like over  the ocean and up toward Heaven ….
And how we all screamed and hollered out loud
          around the perilous curves …our hearts gasping and pounding fast…
                  until we would all arrive back … 
Safe and drenched with laughter …
And I remember that on cold chilly nights
              and also in daytime bright with sunshine ...
I would walk  on the Pike, marching to the tune of the calliope or to a brass band
Alone with my father, Leo “Tony” Miller,
        leading me down the Midway 
                holding my little hand in his big rough warm hand ….
And all  Carnies would all wave at him …
and all of the  ladies would smile at us ...
          and we would get on all the rides for free ...
My father knew all of the carnies and the bearded lady and the fire eater ...
          and he could do trapeze and magic tricks …
         and he always had a million wonderful stories to tell ...
They called him Tony but his name was really Leo Miller …
and he was  the head electrician at the Pike during the Fifties ….
The “Magic Man” with the dark handsome good looks
                and the twinkle always in his warm brown eyes …
                      who always kept the neon rainbow lights glowing and the rides going 
I remember ….  as if in a dream ….
      eating saltwater taffy and candy rocks
              and getting my fortune told
                    and seeing King Kong at the Strand Theatre
And trying to catch the brass ring on the Carousel
         and a scary Fun House with a big  fat lady and man laughing on top
                      and a ferris wheel where you could almost touch the stars …
My father was the man who lit the lights at the Long Beach Nu Pike ...
And as long as he was there … everything was magic …
          and I was safe … and everything  was possible ….
              and everyone was wonderful and good and beautiful
The carnies, the freaks, the midgets, and  the stone man at the Pike  were all his best friends … and he taught me they were beautiful ....
              and to love them too
And by loving them to never fear difference
but  to embrace difference and to honor it …
      and to  shelter and protect it  deep in my soul.
I remember my Father when he was alive and vibrant ...
         and handsome and strong ... and he was there loving me
         and rubbing his rough whiskers on my face ...
He said it  would make me tough ...
            Just like he said burnt toast would give me curly hair.
We both had curly hair ...  my Dad and I. .. .
And he always smelled so good like Lilac Vegetal …
When we walked on weekends at the Pike ... long ago ... 
         when the Great Coaster was still there.
Then all of a sudden …
Vanished
The Coaster …
The  Pike …..
All all the glittering moments…
        like coins in  a  magic handkerchief  …
                it all disappeared …  somewhere in time … never to be found again….
When  Time grabbed  the Great Cyclone Racer ...
And before that my Father. ...the rest of the story … near lost in a brief - long darkness…
That  I try really hard to forget.
I want only to remember  the Magic
And the rainbow lights and smell of the surf
And my Father’s arm around me, and my head on his chest
And the little red cars clickety clack clickety clack …
                Going up to the  stars  …
© Copyright 2009 Mary Owens (maryowens at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
Writing.Com, its affiliates and syndicates have been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work.
Log in to Leave Feedback
Username:
Password:
Not a Member?
Signup right now, for free!
All accounts include:
*Bullet* FREE Email @Writing.Com!
*Bullet* FREE Portfolio Services!
Printed from https://www.Writing.Com/view/1607605