The Ballad of Othello Clemence

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There's a black wind howlin' by Whylah Falls;There's a mad rain hammerin' the flowers;There's a shotgunned man moulderin' in petals;There's a killer chucklin' to himself;There's a mother keenin' her posied son;There's a joker amblin' over his bones.Go down to the Sixhiboux River, hear it cry,"Othello Clemence is dead and his murderer's free!"

O sang from Whylah Falls and lived by sweat,Walked that dark road between desire and regret.He pitched lumber, crushed rock, calloused his hands:He wasn't a saint but he was a man.Scratch Seville shot him and emptied his skull,Tore a hole in his gut only Death could fill.Now his martyr-mother witnesses in criesOver his corpse cankered white by lilies.

There's a black wind snakin' by Whylah Falls;There's a river of blood in Jarvis County;There's a government that don't know how to weep;There's a mother who can't get no sleep.Go down to the Sixhiboux, hear it moanLike a childless mother far, far, from home,"There's a change that's gonna have to come,I said, a change that's gonna have to come."

© Clarke George Elliott