Snow melt on a bright April afternoon
Sparkled as it sang down Turtle Mountain.
Women and children, heartened
with the promise of a summer near,
smiled through their daily chores.
Coal miners began their shift,
oblivious to the weight above.
The scoffed at the native tribes,
the Kootenays and Blackfoot,
who, fearful, kept their distance
from the Mountain that Walks.
Such superstition and 'old wives tales',
bubbled easily past their care,
just as the waters of the Old Man River chuckled,
slipping by the rocky banks of Crows Nest Pass.
That night, as their wives and children
wove lavender dreams on fresh pillows,
seventeen men worked the night shift
checking beams and trusses and walking tunnels.
Above them loomed the limestone,
cracking as meltwater froze and spread.
Tinkling stones sang out on the tipple,
and, falling free, rang off the rails outside.
Then, with a crack, sudden sharp,
loud as a thousand thunderclaps,
heard a hundred miles away,
the old mountain rolled...
rolled over and flattened.
The mountainside flowed, reaching far,
bouyed on a cushion of air
and in a hundred seconds of terror
crashed upon the town below.
Buried there yet are those people,
beneath the mountain that walked.
Under a blanket of stone they sleep
within the moonscape that was Frank, Alberta.