The Cable Car

San Francisco Cable Car Image Credit:

San Francisco Cable Car
Image Credit:

Click, clack

Sound of wheels on steel track.

It’s passengers seated and sideboard hanging,

Drawing in closely to avoid shoulder banging.

Laughing and smiling as hills fall and rise,

Joy of the children as they stare with eyes wide.

This slow moving coaster, it navigates with ease,

Tourist and locals, all does it please.

One low fare takes you beginning to end,

As seen in the movies, I would do it again.

The cable cars roll through picturesque streets,

Shops and restaurants prove such unexpected treats.

Mixing worldly cultures all living as one,

A city composed of diverse brethren.

This beautiful city a diamond on the bay,

Visitor or immigrant so many have stayed.

Whether riding the rails, up and down dip,

Or walking the streets, such a glorious trip.


~~ Dominic R. DIFrancesco ~~


In the Wake of Barnegat Bay


Clamming on the Barnegat Bay

Marsh grass swaying to summer’s breeze music,

Wafting smell of sulfur…cattail decay permeates the air,

Skeleton legged egrets skate over muck and mire,

Silently stalking, without trace or print,

Fisher of frog and killie and eel satiate the craw,

Atypical beauties gliding amongst driftwood and jellyfish.

Gulls chatter wakes the quiet of the rustling reeds,

Circling, cawing in haphazard patterns above the sea,

Groupies to fish laden boats anxious for port,

Unafraid…swooping to touch the hand that feeds,

Scraps of innards, heads, tails treats for the monochrome crew,

Relentless in their acrobatic aerial pursuit.

Sullen skies harvest chilly rains, whipping winds churn the bay to froth,

Whitecaps endlessly roll across turbulent waters,

Crashing to port and starboard in a symphony of wind-swept spray,

Biting hardened faces, skin soaked..raw with each pull of the rake and tong,

Muscle aches, such minute reward, so honorable the sacrifice,

For bushels of clams…the elusive cherry stone.

Brutality of summer’s heat nor winter’s cold deters,

Boats of wood, chipping and weathered, flat-bottom or “v”,

Designs dreamt in the mind of another century,

Purpose built, purpose born, rugged men, bred for the rigors,

Calloused, barnacle laden, weaned from the land, cast to the sea

Baymen one and all, men to their briny cores.

Bay of cedar and Atlantic salt, treacherous inlet throat,

Darkened by sources of origins mixed,

Nectar of life to fish and fowl, baymen and boater, lovers of marine,

Beauty whilst beast when stoked by storm,

Life giving…treacherous for the ignorant and uninitiated,

Wondrous, mysterious…Barnegat Bay.

~~ D. R. DiFrancesco ~~

* I grew up along the Barnegat Bay, in New Jersey and worked as a commercial clammer for a number of years.  This type of work is not easy by any stretch of the imagination, but it certainly was honest work and taught me the value of persistence.  This is an absolutely beautiful area to live in and now that I live in the desert, I realize how much I love and miss the bay and ocean.

Cry for the Song Dog


A singular bay,

Followed by another,

Then another,

Their lonesome calls,

Echo through the granite canyons,

The pale summer moon,

Pays homage to their cries,

What must the Hopi and the Navajo thought,

Looking into the darkness of night,

O’ they knew the coyote well,

The hero, trickster and shapeshifter,

A buffoon,

A clown,

Seldom dangerous,

Never a nuisance,

That is the label of today,

Seeing the song dog as inconvenient,

Thrusting them out,

To places they don’t call home,

Still they are not be hushed, but resilient,

Distant howls,

Raised to the crystal moon can be heard,

Their sad lonesome cry,

Growing fainter and eerily infrequent,

As man advances on their prairie,

Leaving little hope for more,

Than a future of extinction,

Will anyone mourn the passing of…

The song dog.

~~ D. R. DiFrancesco ~~