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Friday, January 13, 2012

Salty Queen

Mighty spirit rises
from  her beautiful
concrete pillars
and arches

with an infinite pathway
enticing us
over a world of blue
past and present blended
swirling waters flowing through.


in quietness
among the
gliding pelicans
and sunning cormorants,

you will hear the whistle
of Flagler’s East Coast train
slowing down
at Knight’s Key
to make the curve
on the Old Seven

with children laughing,
people pointing  in awe
at the wonders of the sea
as they traverse in a different time.

What will be her demise,
this old salty queen
with cracked skin,
rusty bones and
coconut pavement?

Will she fade away
in the crimson sunset
or one mystic sunrise,
fragment by fragment
carried out to the deep?

I think not.

For the Old Seven
is of the Conch Republic
and this majestic treasure
has an everlasting beat
in the heart
of the Florida Keys.


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Let’s Visit Awhile

I lived on an island when I was a child.
It’s time to go back there and visit awhile.
Remember the sunsets? No two were alike,
With fires that exploded, just before night.

Fish grew big then and jumped so high.
We ate buckets of shrimp and fresh lobster pie.
We played in the sun and swam in the sea,
Drank coconut milk and built hideouts in trees.

I’d like to go back to that dot in the ocean,
drink key limeade and rub on sun lotion.
I yearn for the laughter, the cheer and the wonder.
Your smile and a big hug will fill my hunger.

We have a chance to make up for lost time.
Grab all your memories, I’ll rekindle mine.
It will be so good to see you, we won’t waste a minute,
Sharing the whole world and all that is in it.

I lived on an island when I was a child.
Come on, go with me. Let’s visit awhile.

By:  Bettye Chaplin

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Love On The Old Seven

Just seventeen, she boarded the train in Marathon on her way to Key West to spend Christmas holidays with her family. At the same time a dashing young man boarded the train and the two began to talk, sharing stories of college, their mutual love of tennis and their dreams of the future as young people do.

A year and a half later the two were married in 1915. Much later in an interview with the Miami Herald, the woman, Priscilla Coe Pyfrom, laughed as she stated that she met her husband on the “Old Seven Mile” bridge, which was quite ironic, since her father, Clarence Coe helped design and engineer the bridge.

Priscilla Coe grew up surrounded by the construction of the Florida East Coast Railway, while her mother provided home-cooked meals and hospitality to the young engineers who helped her father with the project.


Amazing, another love affair involving the Historical Old Seven Mile Bridge.  Do you have a story about the Old Seven to share? If you do, email us at:

Help Save the Old Seven Bridge – a Wonderful Asset for All of the Keys

Submitted by:
Deborah C. Linker

Saturday, November 26, 2011

My Vision for Marathon

This vision for Marathon is the restructuring of the economy of this island.  I love projects that provide and benefit communities.  The infrastructure is in place with the  airport, new sewage regs., and pro-business town officials.  Marathon needs to really push this “Save Old Seven” movement.  Marathon – the Emerald of the Keys.

I want to proceed with bumper stickers and banners for local business interests to profile.  We need everyone to participate in the Keys but our international profile will be the ticket to development.  How strong are our political allies in the legislature?  To go forward with environmental and structural issues, we must become more politically connected.  We just simply must tie that knot to go forward.  As our organization grows, we need to meet with our State Legislative members to emphasize the economic impact for Marathon with proforma statistical data as well as projected data for public/private partners to view the value of this community redevelopment.  Again, the state college system could help us with market data, statistical analysis, and feasibility studies that would provide data format commands for big developers to come on board.  All we need is to have a registered securities and exchange commission registered accounting firm to sign off on our feasibility and proforma data.  We can do it!

Jerry Chapman

Friday, November 25, 2011

Four-Legged Bridge Walkers

This Saturday I made two new friends, Murray and Zane Grey. They are four-legged bridge walkers on the historical Old Seven Mile Bridge.  According to Zane Grey’s owner, Lynn, her big beautiful a goldendoodle, which was a rescue dog, has been walking the Old Seven since he was ten weeks old.  Lynn is also a volunteer on the team for greenways and trails to keep clean this part of the Overseas Heritage Trail.

Murray, a friendly healthy looking mastiff mix is from Safe harbor Animal Rescue of the Keys (S.H.A.R.K) and is available for adoption along with several other dogs at cats at their facility at 10550 Aviation Blvd.  According to executive director, Katie, the animal rescue facility brings dogs for a bridge walk at least once a week, usually, Saturdays, and entices a passerby to volunteer to walk a dog or two.  If anyone is interested, this wonderful no-kill facility needs volunteers to walk dogs at their facility (305-743-4800.)

In addition, many other local residents walk their dogs on the Old Seven Bridge, a wonderful place to experience nature and interact with other two-legged and four-legged bridge-walkers.

Join the Friends of Old Seven, a non-profit organization


Submitted by:

Deborah C. Linker