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I Was Framed - BOTH Audio and Text

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‘Twere me an’ Ol’ Dan, on a cold winter night - whilst ridin’ the streets o’ McGiven Who noticed a couple o’ fellas ride off from the house where the preacher was livin’! Far as I knowed he was not out o’ town, so I hollered, “Hold up,” to Ol’ Dan, Thinkin’ I’d wait for a minute or two, till I’d seen me a sign o’ the man. Dark as it were, with the moon being full, ‘twere easy to see that the door Hadn’t been closed, and - fer how they’d road off….I waited a few minutes more. Seein’ no light, I was guessin’ the preacher was either asleep or was gone, But wonderin’ why - with the door bein’ open, an’ barely an hour from dawn - People’d been there, an’ I got suspicious, so….tethering Ol’ Dan to a stone - I gingerly walked to the door of the parsonage, nervous, and very alone! The preacher’s old hound-dog was goin’ berserk as I cautiously stepped on the porch, An’ blacker than pitch ‘neath the roof - and inside - I sure could-a used me a torch. “Anyone home?” I inquired quite loudly…then waited…then did it again. Now kinda worried ‘bout what was the reason for a zero response could-a been, I shoved the door open and once again hollered, “Anyone home,” super loud! Then, glancin’ around me I seen - fer my shoutin’ - I’d gathered a sizeable crowd. “What’s going on here?” someone inquired. I answered, “I can’t really say, But minutes ago I spotted two fellas on horseback a-racin’ away! “They’d left the door open, and, seein’ no lights, I figured I’d best check it out.” Well, that’s when the Sheriff arrived on the scene, to learn what the fuss was about, Looked at me cooly and said, “What’s the ruckus,” lit a lantern that hung near the door, Then asked me straight out, “So, tell me exactly…what were you coming here for?” “I wasn’t coming here, Sheriff,” I replied, “I was merely out riding around. And nothin’ yer seein’ is anything diff’ernt than what - when I got here - I found. “I’ve been a-hollerin’, time and again, but ain’t never once heard a word, An’ I’m perty certain, if Amos is in there…I gotta believe he’d a heard. “Couple o’ fellas done flew out this door - then rode away quick as a blink, An’ I’m only guessin’, but - if ya’ asked me - I’d tell ya’ straight out what I think. He would-a heard me by now, ain’t no doubt’ - even if he’d been in bed - An’ I’ll give ya’ ten to one odds on a dollar…an’ bet ya’ the preacher is dead!” “Don’t let him leave, boys,” the Sheriff commanded, “I’m goin’ inside for a look. If he ain’t in there, I’ll do me some checkin’……to see was there anything took. “Looks like a robbery to me, at the least, and I hope that the preacher’s OK, But till I come back, Jessie - you an’ Eldeen…don’t let this guy get away!” Only a couple o’ minutes had passed ‘fore the Sheriff, with fire in his eyes, Come stormin’ out yellin’, “Yer wastin’ yer breath, and my time, with yer bull-*******’ lies! “Amos is dead…and the fund for the church he kept locked in his desk isn’t there!” Then, turning to me, he said, “Mister…you’re claimin’ you seen this mysterious pair “Leavin’ the parsonage, lickety-splt, right when you just happened by!” “That’s what I saw,” I growled at the fool, “and if I’m the killer, then why… “Why would I stand here and holler like crazy, drawing a crowd like I did, And stay here and risk someone findin’ the money, which surely I’d had to have hid?” “I see it different,” the Sheriff explained. “I’m bettin’’ the dog started howlin’, and you got to figurin’ folks passin’ by would o’ noticed you over here prowlin’, “So…you drew a crowd to establish an alibi - claimin’ you’d only just come! Well, you must be thinkin’ yer perty damn smart…and a-hopin’ that I’m perty dumb!” Now, while we were squabblin’, his sneaky young deputy - right when he couldn’t be seen - Stashed, in my saddlebag, some of the money they’d stolen, and got a way clean! After the deputy’d nodded ‘OK’ to the Sheriff - their ploy was complete, And he quickly insisted on searching my saddlebags…tying their story up neat! See…they were the two I’d seen ridin' away! They were the killers and thieves! But since being found to be guilty depends on whomever the jury believes, I was convicted of doing a crime for which I was errantly blamed, And I’ve spent the last forty years of my life trying - to prove…I was framed! PS: I've now got 4 new Audio-CDs - @ 4 1/2 hours each = (62 diversely varied pieces). They’re listed on EBAY - under - “Mark Stellinga Poetry” - or available by simply contacting me at -- -- should those of you who enjoy listening to poems as well as reading them - and particularly those of you that travel - care to be so entertained. (We use safe and simple - PayPal) Cheers, Mark

Copyright © | Year Posted 2021

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