They say “there’s no accountin’ fer’ taste.”
Perhaps it’s the same fer’ brains.
Like choosin’ a horse bearin’ criminal path
while unable ta’ control the reigns.
Dick Fellows was just such a fool,
though others would claim he was wiley.
Yet the mistakes he had made were of such a low grade
he would admit them quite rare, an’ then only shyly.
Assault an’ a robbery had bought him some time,
an’ the place he was sent was San Quentin.
Though the time that he got was cut rather short
on account of the faith he was hintin’.
He acted quiet pious, an’ bowed ta’ his knees,
then quoted a verse here an’ there.
A jailhouse conversion of the first magnitude,
with a personal testimony ta’ share.
Well, Governor Booth got wind of the change,
“let’s cut that poor Fellows some slack.”
So they unlocked the shackles an’ set Fellows free,
but the guards, they knew he’d be back.
He weren’t much of a worker, but wished ta’ be rich,
so to crime once more he did turn.
Yet ta’ rob a stagecoach he needed a horse,
but horses caused his innards ta’ churn.
Fellows went ta’ the livery ta’ rent a cayuse,
then sought a Wells Fargo stage he did fancy.
But on the way ta’ the hold-up, the ridden got wind of the rider,
an’ the spirited horse became antsy.
It bucked an’ it reared an’ threw Fellows down,
then ran off back ta’ the livery.
The timing now off, the first got away,
he switched targets fer’ the second delivery.
The Bakersfield stage he got ta’ hold-up,
then realized he forgot vital tools.
He could not break the locks so he carried the box.
How foolish ta’ forget all the rules.
The second horse then took off like the first,
leavin’ Fellows ta’ hump his own load.
But he’d gone this far, so carry he would,
just hopin’ he’d got him some gold.
So he shouldered the box, an’ walked in the dark,
then took a near twenty foot fall.
Down the number five tunnel of the Southern Pacific,
where he broke his leg an’ wanted ta’ bawl.
He drug himself ta’ a Chinaman’s tent,
an’ he found an axe ta’ steal.
Made himself a crutch, then chopped open the box,
“Eighteen-hundred, my God, what a deal!”
He then limped along ta’ the Fountain Ranch,
where he stole himself a new horse.
Then made his way ta’ an abandoned shack,
where he was arrested by detectives, of course.
Fer’ the crime he committed the verdict came down,
eight long years he must do.
Though the very next day Fellows could not be found,
a tunnel in the floor he went thru.
He stole one more horse, but had similar luck,
the law caught him before he could run.
Shipped him straight ta’ San Quentin, the guards had been right,
he was back there under the gun.
He was freed in five years, instead of the eight,
but quickly forewent honest means.
So he held-up a stage an’ got clean away,
but with only ten dollars in his jeans.
Well, he tried it again, but it was worse than before,
the cash box contained a mere letter.
Then the third attempt, after waitin’ some time,
had a similar outcome, not better.
Less than a year from the time of his release
back behind bars he did go.
He was sentenced ta’ life, at Folsom this time,
yet he escaped once more, don’t ya’ know:
though he hadn’t learned nothin’ in all his attempts,
as he mounted an’ grabbed up the reigns.
The horse bucked him off, the lawmen did scoff,
cuz’ once more the horse showed all the brains.
© JW Thomas