Crash Poem by Robert Smith – The Day the Music Died

by Michael RichComment — Updated September 22, 2023

Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, The Big Bopper

This very poignant poem was written and sent to me by Robert Smith, thank you Robert for your beautiful words.

An Iowa Field ©
Before, it was just An Iowa Field,
But for reasons unknown fate would yield,
A piece of ground where had passed countless years,
Hallowed ground that would see many tears,
At the Surf a Winter Dance,
Rising stars to see, some would get the chance
To hear some great musicians play,
Rock and Roll in its early day,
“Rave On” “Oh Boy”, echoed in the place,
“La Bamba”, “Oh Donna”, “Chantilly Lace,”
Outside winter raged and snow did fall,
But for three bright stars would be the final call,
A phone call to loved ones after the show,
Then into the cold bus, gear they did stow,
Banter and jokes, about the flight,
Would haunt others many a night,
Bad heater, dirty laundry, and cold feet,
A touch of the flu got the big man a seat,
Heads he said, that quick luck would decide,
Meaningless events would say who would ride,
Thirty-six and some change was the price to fly,
But the one who sang, “I Wonder Why,”
Thought it was too much to give,
So more hits he would have and life to live,
A young pilot and a snowy night,
Fading tail light dropping out of sight,
Unfamiliar instruments a bad night to fly,
Three stars would fall out of the Iowa night sky,
Dreams unfulfilled, bodies broken,
Among the corn stubble lay, nothing spoken,
Visual wounds that would never heal,
Did a baleful site the sunrise reveal,
Buddy, Richie, Bopper into the night you flew,
And why it happened only God knew,
Your sounds live on and in our hearts you’ll stay,
Rest in peace you’ll “Not Fade Away,”
The music they played will forever last,
Time goes on and many years have passed,
Was there today and saw people kneeled,
In the place once just An Iowa Field.

Copyright 2010 Robert Smith

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