Downhome Magazine

The Day the Circus Came to Town

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Growing up as a little girl in Newfoundland we entertained ourselves and made our own fun. Not much excitement came to our little town but I well remember the day my father told me the circus was coming and he would take me to ride on the merry-go-round with the painted ponies. I was very young and not sure if I knew what a circus was. This would be my first big adventure with my father.

The day finally arrived and I put on my favourite pink dress and little white shoes with bows. I was ready. I remember walking across the fair ground with my father holding my hand and the excitement bubbling up hearing the music streaming from the merry-go-round.

My father bought the tickets and when the music stopped, he sat me on the pony with the big, blue eyes as he stood by my side holding the pole. I remember the feeling of closeness with my father as we waited for the music to start. The ride was magical and I never wanted it to end.

There are many times as an adult, when I think about my father who has now passed, and it takes me back to that special moment when the circus came to town. In fact, I wrote about poem about it:

The painted ponies smile as the music plays and the merry-go-round goes around and around, up and down.

The music stops and her daddy picks her up, places her on
the painted pony with the big blue eyes and the easy smile.

He holds her tight as he stands by her side. The music
starts and the ponies go around and round, up and down.

The most magical feeling with daddy by her side
as she enjoys the exciting painted pony ride.

Every year the circus comes to town
and daddy will take her to ride on the merry-go-round
as the music plays and the ponies go up and down.

Memories float back about this adventurous ride
with daddy by her side, as the ponies go around and round,
up and down.

It seems her life has gone around and round, up and down,
no pony to ride no daddy around.

She thinks back to the joy of those precious days,
the circus in town, a little girl amazed.

When she needs to feel comfort, her memory strays
Back to those safe and fun-filled days,
With her daddy holding her tight
knowing everything was right.

The ponies went around and round, up and down as the music
played when the circus came to town.

-Melvina Walter (nee Smith)

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