The latest poem in my growing Jesse James manuscript. The event described here never happened. It’s one of the pieces that makes this and my others books historical fiction, a narrative told via a series of poetry.
Jesse stomped down that valley slope
like an avalanche, but once he got close enough
to be heard, he crept quiet as a cat on a cloud.
Slinkin’ behind some fallen oaks and over
a stone here and there, Jesse found himself
a cluster of shrubs with leaves as thick as wool.
He’d been shootin’ from there. That fella
was choppin’ wood, swingin’ an axe faster
than woodpecker peckin’ wood , and he whistlin’
Dixie. Believe that? A Yankee whistlin’ Dixie!
But then bang, Jesse pulled that trigger,
sent a bullet through his axe hand.
That damn Yank dropped that axe
and fell to his knees like a boy kneelin’ to pray.
That’s when Jesse stepped from those shrubs,
walkin’ sure as Jesus strolled the waters.
Jesse walked right up to that old Yankee,
waited till he begged a bit, then blam.
Yankee’s head swallowed that bullet
and spat it out its other side.
Quantrill laughed, He ain’t whistlin’ Dixie no more.