Fort Peck Mystery
by Londis Carpenter
Friday, July 04, 2003
Not rated by the Author.
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I have posted the url link below which will give the reader a history of Fort Peck Dam
Click here, to download ftpeck2.mp3
On the dusty slopes where there's still cowpokes, where there's yet more sky than land,
In the Big Sky State, back in thirty-eight, they were hiring at Fort Peck Dam.
In the open skies where I get my highs, past the spillway near the fort,
A small town looms where there's more saloons than a feller like me could sport.
Came a Texan bloke who was almost broke (and I'll tell you right now, it was I).
I was looking for work, something of my sort, but I'd take any job to get by.
At a cowpoke's inn where I wet my chin, and while standing at the bar,
I watched a girl who could dance and whirl to the tunes of a wrangler's guitar.
Every eye in the bar watched her jiggle and jar, not a one who wouldn't make her his own.
But, in spite of her shaking, I could see she was taken by a gent who sat back all alone.
And I saw in his face that he felt disgrace, Saw the jealosy seethe in his eyes.
Though he sat in disdain, and he never complained, his displeasure was easily surmised.
In a place where legends and tales abound, where circumstance rules the day,
Shaping men's schemes and frustrating their dreams, until willpower has no sway.
Where fate may run contrary to plan, frustrating their deepest desire.
It has often been shown that the life of a man can still change when his soul's set afire.
I can only tell what I know is true , what I saw with my very own eyes.
But the man, alone in the back of the room, had a murderous look in his eyes.
I left the bar and went up to my room; tomorrow I'd be working for sure.
And the music still played, but the blare and the din didn't keep me from sleeping till four.
The morning came fast, and now working, at last, (for they hired me to work on the dam).
I worked and I toiled and I know my blood boiled pouring concrete for old Uncle Sam.
I gave no thought at all of the evening before; soon the whistle blew, ending my day.
And a drink with the crew seemed the right thing to do. I still had a few bucks I could pay.
At a bar back in town where we all bought a round The gossips were whispering a tale.
It seems like the girl, who knew how to whirl, was being held down at the jail.
A body was found in this little camp town that was burned beyond recognition.
Folks came forward to tell of a marriage from hell, of suspicion and speculation.
They had argued and foughtmany times, when he caught her escorting men from the saloon.
Many folks heard her beg him to leave, to go off and to leave her alone.
The body was found under two feet of ground in a newly dug patch of her lawn.
and no one was missed from the residents list but her husband, nowhere to be found.
It was open and shut, they'd arrested her butt. and there weren't any clues to redeem her.
The gossip was keen and vicious and mean. Every woman in town would demean her.
Then a telegram came and I got on a train to a Texas town on the divide.
Where my father, quite ill, was having a spell and I wanted to be by his side.
I was well out of town when I happened to hear a railroad detective named Sam
Tell a story, quite odd, of a hobo he thought was asleep, by the track near the dam.
He had gone off to chase the bum from his place and had tossed a road flare on his bed.
But he fell to surprize when the bum failed to rise; and approaching, he found him quite dead.
He left him to burn so the next one would learn that Old Sam was the "king of this road."
But when he went back there was nothing but track, not a sign of the bum or his load.
Then I had an idea, for it made me recall what I'd seen that last night at the inn.
In the look on the face of a fellow disgraced, who had now vanished into the wind.
Had he buried that bum and planted some clues, then departed on this same train?
Sent his wife off to jail and covered his trail to start his life over again.
Fort Peck History
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|Reviewed by Nordette Adams
|Londis, this is marvelous, both the poem and your recitation. Indeed you do have a great audio voice. And I like the music in the background too. Compelling narrative poem you have here, sir. I'm saving it.
PS: I have audio of a recent recitation of my own at this link: http://www.authorsden.com/visit/viewpoetry.asp?id=139688 I warn you, the language is purple. :-D
|Reviewed by Katy Walsvik
|My god, Londis! I am utterly speechless.. thank goodness my fingers work, though my head is whirling.. Jaysus, I'm gasping! What a magnificent saga! I'm absolutely stunned at how you kept up the perfect rhyme and rhythm, yet not once was it forced to keep going.. You are a master at storytelling, but to tell it with your poetic style and grace.. Whew! Superb! god, you're good! katy.|
|Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner
WOWOWOWOWOWOW what an epic--well done
(((HUGS))) and love,
|Reviewed by Tinka Boukes
|Great write Sir Londis!!
|Reviewed by Elizabeth Taylor (Reader)
|Reviewed by Londis Carpenter
|Thanks Ted and Leland. Now all I gotta do is go through it again to get all the typos out. but I just spent 7 hours writing it and need a break LOL.|
|Reviewed by Ted Sheridan (Reader)
|Thank you for the great entertainment.|
|Reviewed by Leland Waldrip
|Intriguing short story, set to poetry. It was great. I thoroughly enjoyed it.