Stories From the Harrison Polk Highway

by Richard Arthurs

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It's a collection of 24 stories of people, places and things. You may even know some one, some place or some thing like what is in the stories. Come on down the highway and share a moment and remember the wonderful memories you cherish.


released August 15, 2014

written, performed, recorded, mixed, produced by Richard Arthurs

mastered by Jeff Muller



all rights reserved


Richard Arthurs Calgary, Alberta

I am a sponge when it comes to musical influences. Almost everything I have listened to through my life has some influence or colouration of my music. There's a mixture of folk, blues, celtic, jazz, reggae, ska and even some bluegrass and country mixed. There's Rock from the 50's to the 2000's. Beatles harmonies, 70's Rock guitars,bass and drums, 80's synths, 90's raw stripped down sounds, ... more

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Track Name: The Harrison Polk Highway
1. Harrison Polk Highway

When it's time to take a break,
And a vacation is what I need to take
Some how some way
Through the morning and all the day

bridge 1:
I find my self traveling down the Harrison Polk Highway
Nothing seems to have changed in the ways
Since Harrison Polk traveled it in his seventeenth century days

And still today the road holds its charm
From the road side attractions to the rustic farms
And I find myself driving down the Harrison Polk Highway
Traveling through places and times along the way

And the speed limit is no problem
Unless I'm moving along too slow
But everyone Understands
because they know

Because time doesn't remain
Constant while the world around slows
And I feel relaxed
As the ambiance of the place glows

bridge 2:
And I'm traveling down the Harrison Polk Highway
And nothing has changed in it's ways
Since Harrison Polk explored it in those 17th century days
Track Name: Made Special by Sally Fergeson
2. Made special by Sally Fergeson

In the summer there is a place I go
A small diner on the edge of no where
And I go there specifically for the pies
Made special by Sally Fergeson

This is the place where I found
The greatest tasting pies in the world
Made with the best from the harvested
Fruits and Berries, gourds and nuts
Made with love and care by Sally Fergeson

In the autumn there is a place I go
A pretty place on the edge of some where
And I go there specifically for the tarts
Made special by Sally Fergeson

This is the place where I find
the greatest tasting tarts in the world
made from the finest of the harvested
pumpkins, cherries, apples and more
Made with love and care by Sally Fergeson
Track Name: Maxwell's Pick Your Own Farm
. Maxwell's Pick Your Own Farm

Maxwell has a farm on the shadier side of the forest
He grows every thing you can imagine.
And once a week he opens it up for anyone
To pick what they like to their hearts delight

refrain 1:
Cabbage and Carrots practically all year
Berries and peas in the late summer
Peaches in September
Pumpkins in October
Every month of the whole year
There's something for every one
Out at Maxwell's pick your own farm

Maxwell has a place on the farther side of the mountain
Where he grows everything you can dream of
And once a week he lets everyone who comes along
To pick what they like to their heart's content

refrain 2:
Radishes and Lettuce practically all year
Cherries and Nuts in the late summer
Apples in September
Sunflowers in October
Every week through the whole year
There's something for everyone
Out on Maxwell's pick it your self farm
Track Name: Angel of Iron
4. Angel of Iron

When driving down (driving down)
the Harrison Polk Highway (highway)
Stop in to see a good friend (I did)
I met one day (One day)
He works with metals (Metals)
in the simplest forms (In the simplest form)
And he can make you anything
(Anything you want)
out of the norm
Anything you want, anything you need, he'll make it for you

He is a former worker on the auto lines
punching out panels and numbing his mind
He wanted to get dirt on his hands
and feel the metal he molded ahd shaped and
he left his job and he left behind the strife
And came out here to build a saner life
When driving down (driving down)
the Harrison Polk Highway (highway)
Stop in to see a good friend
(A good friend of mine)
I met one day (A long time ago)
He works with metals (Any kind of metal)
in the simplest forms (In all kinds of forms)
And he can make you anything
(Almost anything)
out of the norm
Anything you want, anything you need,
he'll make it for you

He once was a worker on the auto lines
running machines and losing his mind
Now he make utensils and tools
and he works the metal into shapes so cool
He can make you anything you need
artwork and tools, musical fluted reeds

When driving down (driving down)
the Harrison Polk Highway
(The Harrison Polk Highway)
Stop in to see a good friend (My Friend)
I met one day (Once upon a time ago)
He works with metals (All kinds of metal)
in the simplest forms (With a hammer and anvil)
And he can make you anything
(So many different things)
out of the norm
You ask for, he'll make, (he'll make it) he'll make it,
yes he will, Cause he's the angel of iron,
the angel of iron he is.
Track Name: Tom's Pizza House
5. Tom's Pizza House

Tom set up a diner here at this special place
It was far from the city and the crazy rat race
He used the best the farmers could grow
And the best meats that the butcher's showed.

refrain 1:
Come on down to Tom's Diner House
Where you'll find the best cooked steak and roasts
Come on down to Tom's Diner House
Where you can meet Tom and give him a toast
Come on down to Tom's Diner House
Where every meal is made special to the utmost

But that was back in nineteen twenty four
Back then that was all he was looking for
But time change and people age
And 40 years later Tom's cancer entered the last stage

And sad as it was to see him go
No one ca red to keep his diner aglow
And so it slipped into ruin and decay
And every one around started moving away

He came from a small village in Tuscany
He came here back in those dreary days
Antonio was what his parents named him
But Tony is who we all called him then.

refrain 2:
Come on down to Tom's Pizza House
Where you'll find Tony making the best pizzas about
Come on down to Tom's Pizza House
With all Tom's old dishes and that hardy stout
Come on down to Tom's Pizza house
Where the finest food leaves you with no doubts
He found Tom's Diner by the road
And around the back he saw the rest of the abode
And he knew he had a revelating dream
He would bring back to life this diner by the stream

Tony found the recipes and all the special mix
That made people come from everywhere to get their fix
And for thirty years Tony made this place his life
But Just like Tom, Tony passed in the night.

But Tony had children and grand kids too
And they were determined to keep his dream true
They ran the place in Tony's later years
And every one remembers Tony with joyful tears

refrain 3:
Come on down to Tom's Diner House
Where you'll find the 5th generation making lunch
Come on down to Tony's Pizza House
A family legacy making pasta by the bunch
Come on down to Tony and Tom's
Two wonderful places to fill you hunger's crunch

And still today this place is still very much alive
Today you can see Tom's Pizza House thrives
Tony and Tom are still watching over with grace
While Tony's grand kids work hard at the busy place
Track Name: The Old Mill
. The Old Mill

In eighteen twenty two Thorton Davidson Mills
Came to this place along Harrison Polk's trail
Looking for that perfect place to build his clothing mill
And here by the Hardesty River he built that mill
The Old Mill is what it's called.
It's memories etched into it's empty halls
Nothing much is left inside its rotting walls
Will it last forever or will it eventually fall
The Old Mill still stands tall
Soon there may be nothing left at all.

The mill closed down in nineteen thirty two
A hundred years of life ending way too soon
It opened again in the sixties as a beer hall
But that didn't last very long when the economy stalled

The mill has sat empty since seventy nine
Now only birds nest among the rotting fur and pine
Many attempts to restore it failed because it's not sound
Now it's only a matter of time before it crashes to the ground
Track Name: Caroline's Grill
7. Caroline's Grill

You won't get any thing elaborate at Caroline's Grill
It's been that way since forever and it is still
For sandwiches and soup are the main fair
The meals you get are simple and square

Caroline's Grill has been around since I don't know when
But it's a place where my friends and I enjoy the time we spend
It's just off the way,
By the motel where not many stay
But I could sit there all day
It's a place to meet
It's a place to greet
And Caroline is so sweet
She makes the best sandwiches, soups and treats

And you won't get anything fancy at Caroline's Grill
But what she makes will keep your tummy filled
And Caroline always has a smiling face
You can't help but to slow down your pace

She opens in the early morning
and closes in the early evening
There's no night time dinning at Caroline's
For every one around that is also fine
For Caroline's is not a place for the night time trade
It's for those who enjoy a lazy afternoon's shade
Track Name: Dancing Cloud
8. Dancing Cloud

There is a marker here on the Harrison Polk Highway
It was put here only recently and it speaks pretty loud
It recognises A man named Dancing Cloud
and his people who lived here in those long passed days

Dancing Cloud was a revered man among his people
He was a shaman, a medicine man, a man who knew the land
And when Harrison Polk got sick and nearly died
Dancing Cloud made the effort to lend him a hand

Except for Harrison Polk who used to hate Indians
There is no mention anywhere of Dancing Cloud in the land
When Harrison Polk returned on his next trip here
Dancing Cloud and his people had disappeared

Nothing was said and nothing was mentioned for centuries
Then in the late nineteen sixties while digging a new quarry
Evidence was found to confirm the story of Polk's
Proof about the existence of Dancing Cloud's folk.

And now remembered from long forgotten past days
Dancing Cloud and his people have returned in a way
And the marker says Harrison Polk didn't lose his mind
And his changed attitude toward Indians wasn't blind
Track Name: Magnetical Mystical Mountain Park
9. Magnetical Mystical Mountain

A place that strange and a place that freaks
People come to wonder and pray
It'a place where strangers meet
Then they whisper as hearts skip beats

The magnetical mystical mountain park
Comes up out of the landscape strangely dark
Beside the meandering Ghost Spirit's Creek
It's a strange place that people seek

A place to wonder and a place to think
People believe here god has blinked
And the water has magic so people drink
Unique in the land is this magnetic sink
Track Name: Sarah Fulton's Road Bed and Breakfast Inn
10. Sarah Fulton's Road Bed and Breakfast

There's a side road off the old Harrison Polk
And it's named for a lady who cut her own path
Through the forests and the rivers she pursued her task
To find a place she could call her home at last

And Sarah Bradford Fulton you see
She made her home her specialty
And through time and time again
Through years of work she made her gain
And the Fulton road has become her lasting fame

Off a side road off the old Harrison Polk
Is the home of a lady treasured by all folk
For Sarah laid down what it meant to be free
And through the years she did what she pleased
And the Fulton road bed and breakfast is her legacy
Track Name: GTO 64
11. GTO 64

GTO Sixty Four is a bar on the Harrison Polk Highway
It's owned and run by George Todd Oliver ( Gee is who we call him)
He calls it Sixty Four because that's the year he was born
And he's open from lunch time to well past early morn

And George has every model of GTO there ever was
In one sixteenth scale on the back wall
In full view for every one to see behind his bar
And he'll let you know that the GTO is the real star

GTO, come on down and share a drink
GTO, come on by and have a beer black as ink
GTO, stay a while and enjoy the ambiance
GTO, and be with friends who sing and dance
GTO, any one with a real one gets a drink for free
GTO, where George loves to talk about his GTO baby (His precious GTO baby

And George has his own real life sixty four Tempest GTO.
Immaculate with no signs of rust or wear, because of his intimate care
He parks it out back in a shed so no one will mess with it
He'll talk about what he's done to restore the smallest bit
Track Name: Mayor Walter Huskins
12. Mayor Walter Huskins

If you want to hear a story
About anyone who lived along this road
There's only one person to ask
He knows all the stories to be told

Walter Huskins is the man who knows
All the stories that have been told
He knows about all the people here
He knows about all the places dear
He knows the mysteries
And he knows the histories
He knows all the foods to be savored
And that's why everyone one calls him mayor

If you want to know the history
and any of this road's mysteries
There's only one person to ask
because knowing everything is his task

If you want to get some where
To any place that is along this road
There's only one person to find
Walter Haskins has the best map in his mind
Track Name: Ode the Explorer Harrison Polk
13. Ode the Explorer Harrison Polk

His name was Mathew Martin Harrison Polk
He came from a well off family in Norfolk
He was not wealthy or of royalty
His family made business their specialty

But Harrison Polk didn't like the scenery
He was tired of the bleak itinerary
He heard of the America's Continent
Where a man could live to his heart's content

And so Harrison Polk set sail for this land
To find a place with in it where he could stand
Upon arrival he searched about the lands
He was enchanted by the great forest stands

Farther and farther away from the coast he walked
And he was amazed at wild animal herds and flocks
So abundant this new land was for man
Exploring it was where he knew his life ran

And Harrison Polk explored the more secret places
Where man could finally understand god's graces
He saw many wonders as he explored the spaces
He felt he had become one with the magical places

His explorations opened many colonising doors
And many people followed from distant shores
His messages of magic and mystery became folk lore
And One day Harrison Polk was heard from no more
Track Name: Down the Harrison Polk Highway
14. Down the Harrison Polk Highway

It's a turn off the main highway
it's easy to miss any time of day
It's an older road down the forgotten lake shore bay
And those who find it will always remember
the Harrison Polk Highway

Come on down and reduce your pace
Forget about the modern world race
Slow down and enjoy the smells and tastes
There's no reason to be moving in haste
Take your time and enjoy this space
down The Harrison Polk Highway

The asphalt is greed and roughly worn
Cracks and cobbles fill the lanes
shoulders covered with grass and mosses so green
As if forgotten to time, there still remains
The Harrison Polk Highway

Though it feels like I've stepped back in time
It's just as modern as any other place
But there's something different about the people and place
As if the modern world has no space down
along the Harrison Polk Highway
Track Name: Mark Miller's General Store
15. Mark Miller's General Store

Mark Miller owns a store, down along the Harrison Polk
And while the city is just down the way
Mark Miller is destined to stay.

You see Mark Miller's General Store
has been here since the Civil War
And generations have come to shop here
Though it has changed names many times through the years
It is a place that has kept it's message clear

You see you can't get what Mark Miller sells
Down in the city and you can tell
For Mark Miller sells only local products
Grown by the farmers and not hauled in by trucks
And Mark Miller knows the community
And Mark Miller cherishes his friends
He's kept alive a unique general store
that has been around since the Civil War
And Mark Miller loves his community
And he sells anything that anyone locally will sell to him,

Mark Miller runs a store, down along the Harrison Polk
And even though the big city is down the way
Mark Miller is guaranteed to stay

Here in Mark Miller's General Store
You'll find things not from distant shores
Families and Friends fill his shelves with their dreams
Things don't stay long with the constant customer stream
It is a place that has made it's message seen

And you can't get what Mark Miller sells
Down in the city amid the human swells
There's something to be said about this quaint place
It's like it's a million miles from the city's fast pace
Track Name: The Hong Kong Take Out Grill
16. The Hong Kong take out grill

There's a take out grill on the old Harrison Polk
And it's run by a man who forged his own way
Over oceans and across the land he pursued the day
When he found the place that he knew he'd stay

And Zhen Zhyo Mo came to here you see
And he made his food his specialty
And through sweat and toil each day
With years of work he made his gain
And the Hong Kong take out grill is his claim to fame

Right on the side of the old Harrison Polk
Is the place of which the finest Chinese food is spoke
For Zhen Zhyo showed us all what it means to be free
And for many years many people he has pleased
And the Hong Kong Take Out Grill Is his legacy
Track Name: Sweet Water Spring
17. Sweet Water Spring

Go down (go down)
the Harrison Polk Highway
Till you get to (you get to the)
the Sweet Water Springs road
It'll take you up to (take you up to)
the mountain valley of the same name
There you'll find (You'll find the spot)
the spot of the Sweet Water Springs

Sweet Water, Sweet Water Springs
Nestled in the foothills of the mountains
Sweet Water, Sweet Water Springs
with healing waters that bring the people in
Sweet Water, Sweet Water Springs
But it's not all about how the water heals
It's all about how the place makes you feel
Sweet Water, Sweet Water Springs
Come on by and take some time to relax
Sit back and take your time while you unpack

Hidden in what seems (in what seems)
a primordial forest
amid the misty (the misty and)
and humidity thick air
a feeling takes you (and fills you)
with the cool valley air
There you'll find the place
(you'll find the place)
of the Sweet Water Springs
it's not so much about
(not so much about)
the artesian well
It's about the nature (about nature)
And the feelings that dwell
Water from here
(the Sweet Water Springs)
really doesn't heal
It's how the place changes
(how the place changes)
how you want to feel
Track Name: The Four Corners
18. The Four Corners

Along the Harrison Polk Highway
Anderson road cuts across
Creating a unique intersection
with four corners teaming with life
Like an island in the ocean
where all the people congregate

The four corners has always been here it seems
Coming out from the landscape like a dream
Beside the burbling Anderson Brook
It's the perfect place to stop and look

Along the Harrison Polk Highway
Anderson road makes a break
Creating an enchanting welcoming place
with four corners pulsing with life
Like a coral reef in the ocean
where all the people come to meet

A place to meet and a place to greet
People come to sell and buy
Vegetables, fruits and meats
Goods dry and canned, staples and treats

A place to sit and a place to rest
People come to laugh and chat
Merchandise sold is only the best
Unique hand crafted to line one's nest
Track Name: The Anderson Road
19. The Anderson Road

A long time ago a path was trod
Down beside the meandering Anderson Brook
Maybe it was deer or bison or Indians
No one really knows for sure
None of the ancient path remains
It's mentioned only in passing in the notes of Harrison Polk

Major Thomas Anderson came here
Fresh from his time as a surveyor for the government
Decided that this path could be used for much more
Of that he had ideas for sure
There was a forest of grand trees
Exploitation more than exploration was the basis of his plans

The Anderson Road has never been the same
Since the dawn of time it has constantly changed
From Hunting and Migrating trails of ancient times
To the modern four lanes cutting through the land
People come and people go
What they did has changed with the nearby river's flow.
And today the Anderson Road is changing once again

Logging became the main occupation then
But the trees soon gave way to men with shovels and picks
And mining became the main traffic down the road
Men came for wealth and left broke
Not much of their work still remains
Because the mines soon gave way to farms and cotton mills

Then the new century and with it
They built a dam to feed the electrical needs.
Then they graveled then they paved, then they made it wide
And the path made so long ago
Disappeared under the modern road
And now the farms and mills are replaced by vacation homes

There's talk of many new things to come
There's talk of a lakeside hotel and a ski resort by the dam
Nothing has ever remained constant on the Anderson Road
And now the path trod so long ago
Is busier than it has ever been
With remembrances from the past mixing with today and the future
Track Name: Doc Hanson
20. Doc Hanson

Doc Hanson is a Doctor on the Harrison Polk Highway
Who knows how to treat any ailment that happens in a day
He seems to know intuitively
He seems to understand conclusively
And he'll make you a medicine that'll fix you right up

Doc Hanson is the one to know
All the secrets the forests grow
He knows all about the body's mysteries
He knows how to solve it's complexities
And he'll give you a special brew
And make feel healthy and much better too
Cause Doc Hanson is the one who knows
And all the people love him so

Doc Hanson is a doctor by choice and has a degree
But he knows a lot more than most people can see
He seems to know intuitively
He seems to diagnose mysteriously
And he'll fix up wounds and have it heal twice as fast

Doc Hanson has a new intern who wants to learn his ways
But he knows that this one, like many others, may not stay
He seems to know instinctively
He seems to know their thoughts intimately
And he'll do what he can to pass on his knowledge his way
Track Name: Sherry's Drink
21. Sherry's Drink

Sherry has a place just around the bend
I found it after being told by a friend
She makes a drink with such unique taste
You don't want to make haste
Sip it slow and swish it about your tongue
Let the flavour fill your lungs.

Come on by any time of the day
Every one hears her say
And it doesn't matter she's out of the way
And it's worth every penny I pay

Sherry has a place down near the end
And I pass along to all my friends
about the drink she uniquely makes
Done in such a way it can never be faked
Drink it slow and roll it around your tongue
It's a taste that leaves every taste bud wrung
Track Name: Cathy
22. Cathy

I met her while I was there,
Down that enchanted road,
The lady I knew as Cathy

She was just like me, that lady I knew as Cathy
She was a traveler traveling through this place
She was just like me, that woman I had called Cathy
Traveling through here pretty much like me

And when our eyes met,
It was instantaneous
When our eyes met,
it was contagious
It was complete,
It was total,
It was absolute

She was there like me, the lady I knew as Cathy
She was taking a break from the stress filled life she had
She was there like me, the woman we all knew as Cathy
Relaxing and unwinding much like me

And these days when I go traveling I'm not traveling alone
Sitting beside me and there to spell me off when I get tired
Is the beautiful lady I know as Cathy.
Track Name: The Harrison Polk Highway (reprise)
23. Harrison Polk Highway (reprise)

Am I'm traveling down
and before I know
I've come to the end
of Harrison Polk Highway

And just like Harrison Polk
who found his way to here
I'm returning to my real world
But some day I'll return
And the adventure will begin again
Down the Harrison Polk Highway
And something new will enchant me
And maybe next time I'll stay
along the enchanted way
of the Harrison Polk Highway
Track Name: They always come back
24. They always come back

There was an interesting thing my friend said to me
He said he never felt the city was where he wanted to be
He came from a small town and came for here for work
But he was bored of his mindless job as a clerk
So he was packing it in and going back home
Back to the place where there were people he's known

And when I was traveling along my favoured haunts
On one of my many Harrison Polk highway jaunts
I noticed that many people who were moving in
Were ones who went away and are returning
Yes, I can see that's how it is
They always come back to the place they miss

There's an interesting thing I'm seeing more and more
And I wonder if everyone understands what's in store
As many older people are leaving the city
The young and the restless go to make their claim
Leaving home to seek their fortune and making their name
Then they return when they get tired from the games