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Billy the Kid Poems (Featuring Virginia Clark)

Billy the Kid researchers Virginia Clark and Lucas Speer in the Billy the Kid Museum in Fort Sumner.

"The Poetic History Of Billy the Kid"

William Bonney was small and slight
A skinny fellow short in height
Young, strong, courageous and brave
That’s what would lead him to his grave

The boy became an outlaw at a very young age
It started in a fight he chose to engage
At 18 years old the first man he did kill
Was a blacksmith named Frank Cahill
This would start his dark and dangerous course
The kid with a crooked grin and hardly no remorse

From Arizona to New Mexico he would go
Landing a job with rancher Frank B. Coe
He then met up with Englishman Tunstall’s gang
From there the Kid’s life would never be the same
John Tunstall took a fancy to Billy
Gave him gifts of a saddle, new guns and a filly

Jimmy Dolan was the leader in town
He wanted his competition to be taken down
Tunstall met his fate alone
His name was written upon a stone
Billy vowed to kill the ones responsible for the death of his friend
And that’s where Billy the Kid’s legacy would begin

The Regulators were born a few days later
First they would start with Morton and Baker
They waited in Lincoln for Brady to arrive
To assassinate the sheriff and take his life

The Kid was indicted and sure to hang
Along with a few others in his gang
The Lincoln County fight was now a war
All this started over a general store

Buckshot Roberts rode with Dolan’s posse the day Tunstall was killed
It cost him his life in the gunfight at Blazer’s Mill
Dick Brewer lost his life in the very same way
And they were laid to rest side by side on the very same day

Dolan’s wrong doings were often hid
And the law came down on Billy the Kid
A five-day shootout at Alex McSween’s
Still finds the Kid alive and free

The death of Chapman Billy did see
He said I will testify if you will pardon me
Lew Wallace granted the Kid’s request
He was brought to Lincoln under arrest
After awhile the Kid became disturbed
Afraid that Wallace wouldn’t keep his word
Kicking up dust on the trail from Lincoln County
Upon Billy’s head comes a $500 bounty

Dead or alive Billy the Kid must be found
And his long time friend the new sheriff in town
Pat Garrett would hold Billy up at Stinking Springs
He captured the outlaw and vows justice he’ll bring
William Bonney was sentenced to hang on the 13th day
In 1881 in the month of May

To the outhouse Billy did go
Where he got the gun no one will ever know
As he climbed the stairs, the legend would tell
He turned and with the pistol shot Deputy Bell
Back up to the room where he had been bound
With Ollinger’s 10-guage shotgun he looked around
From the window; all he said
Was “Hello Bob”! Then shot him dead

No lawman or jail would tie him down
He escapes again to ride out of town
Billy the Kid would stay on the run
Yet meet his fate, through the barrel of a gun

Pat Garrett and his men were lying low
Late one night in Fort Sumner, New Mexico
As Billy’s lone figure approached the Maxwell house
The deputies sat quite as a mouse

When he stepped upon the porch the deputies he would see
As he backed into the door he said, “who is it?” to Pete
Sheriff Pat Garrett was about 6’4
It was his bullet that left the Kid dead on the floor

They say he killed a man for every year of his life
He was good with a gun and good with a knife
William Bonney’s short life was violent and cruel
But he always lived by his own simple rules

Billy the Kid’s life will always be
Forever in our minds a mystery
Yet on and on it will go
The Mysterious legend of “El Chivato”

Virginia Clark
July 2004

Virginia at James Carlyle's grave located near the remains of the Greathouse Station and Tavern

"Famous For The Fall"

All of these are famous simply for the fall
At the hands of "The Kid", for he killed them all
Frank Cahill was the first blood he had ever shed
For slapping his face and humiliating him
That is what they said

He ran from Bonita on John Murphy's horse
And his life headed into an unlawful course
Then he would meet John Tunstall who took him under his wing
His life was looking up and then an awful sting

Billy Morton and Frank Baker would lead Tunstall to his grave
"Billy the Kid" swore he would take revenge and get them both someday
Not long after, the Regulators were duely sworn and they were deputized
They captured Morton and Baker and while taking them in, Billy realized
He had made a promise to take them down
So they were both shot and left upon the ground

As the posse rode on, into Lincoln they would go
Sheriff William Brady this he did not know
For he was next on the list for he was behind it all
Billy and the Regulators fired upon him and in the street he did fall
Now he was considered an outlaw on the run
He never rode or slept far from his gun

Pat Garrett became sheriff and his posse would hunt them down
And there at Stinking Springs, Billy and the Regulators he had found
Finally they surrendered and was taken under arrest
They had convicted "Billy the Kid" and put him to the test

There in Lincoln County Billy was awaiting his day
The last two victims would make the mistake and let him get away
He shot James Bell on the stairway as he went up to the room
Then he shot Bob Ollinger through the window with a boom

"Billy the Kid" escaped from jail in April, but soon his life would end
In Fort Sumner Pat Garrett would shoot him down and the legend would begin
We will never know what went through the mind of "The Kid"
Nor what the exact reasons were for doing as he did

I wonder if he hadn't died that day Would he have killed the rest of them before he went astray
For he was simply going down the list and one by one he killed
And at the hands of "Billy the Kid" their destinies fulfilled
Some say he killed these men and maybe even more
And now they're famous for the fall, although they weren't before

Virginia Clark

Virginia at deputy James Bell's grave in White Oaks

Virginia setting by the foundation at Stinking Springs where Billy the Kid was captured by Pat Garrett on December 23, 1880.

"The Capture"

There was snow on the ground one cold December night
Five outlaws shiver at the peak of morning light
In a small rock house known as Stinking Springs
Their stomachs are empty and in their ears a ring
The horses are hungry and need to be fed
Charlie Bowdre steps out the door and they struck him dead
He fell in the doorway and hit the floor
He whispered they've killed me and it hurts to the core
Go out shooting and get a few of them before you die
They helped him to his feet as he slowly sighed
With pistols in hand he walked out the door and stumbled to his knees
He said, I wish, I wish, I wish, as he fell at their feet

A posse of lawmen wait in an arroyo about 30 feet away
Is that you out there Pat, Billy would say
Come on up here and give us a fair fight, Pat said no way
The outlaws were quiet for awhile
Upon Billy's face was a really big smile
For they were planning to come out with a boom
The Kid was going to ride his mare
And blast out of the room
They tried to get a horse in, but it was shot and fell to the floor
Now they were trapped for there was only one door
Blocked by the animal there was no way out
This ticked Billy off and he started to shout

He hushed for awhile then cracked jokes out loud
As night set in they could smell the food and hear the crowd
Their hunger and coldness would put them to the test
Just to be fed and be warm would be worth their arrest
Not too many men were lucky enough to catch him like Pat Garret did
But if you think about it nature was the only reason for the capture of the Kid

Virginia Clark

Virginia standing in the exact room where Billy the Kid ate his last Christmas dinner. After Garrett captured Billy at Stinking Springs he stopped here at Puerto de Luna for Christmas Dinner on the way to Las Vegas. Billy had to eat his last Christmas Dinner while shackled to Dave Rudabaugh.

"Warrior Of The West"

Back in the 1800's when the west was untamed
A young boy roamed the land and Henry Anrtrim was his name
With the passing of his mother, his step-father left him alone
He set out across the prarie fending for his own
Doing what he had to do to survive from day to day
Without the guidance he needed, he would likely go astray

The first time he went to jail, through the chimney he would escape
Hiding laundry for "Sombrero Jack" would be his first mistake
Not knowing they just wanted to scare him, Billy ran away
Into Arizona where he would quietly lay

On a Friday night in August, Billy would kill his first man
And shortly after that he would join the Jesse Evans clan
Now considered an outlaw known as "Billy the Kid"
He struggled to be free and keep himself hid

Billy was a sharp shooter and good with a gun
For this reason he went to work for the Englishman
He took good care of Billy and a whole lot more
And with his murder came along the Lincoln County War

The sheriff was crooked and to the "House" he would fall
So Billy would take justice into his hands, with or without the law
He took the lives of those who had taken his life away
And for these actions he would lose his life on a dark and dreary day

They say he was an outlaw, a thief and a murderous man
But as we know he was simply dealing with an evil clan
I don't believe he was bad, his intentions were for the best
He wasn't a cold blooded killer, Just a Warrior of the West

Virginia Clark

Virginia in Fort Sumner 2007

"Lover To An Outlaw"

I'm a lover to an outlaw who's always on the run
He stops in on occasions to have a little fun
They say he's a wild one and always breaks the law
But, when he smiles that crooked smile time and time I fall
Our time together I know will not last very long
The relationship we have to everyone else it is wrong

I know he seems rough and rugged, but he is very sweet
Everytime he touches me he sweeps me off my feet
Back in his saddle I watch him ride away
On the run again for many, many days
Here I am left feeling empty and confused
How long do I have to wait to once again be used

I know that it sounds crazy, but I love this little fling
I love being whatever I am to this "Boy Bandid King"
Months have gone by since I've seen this man that I adore
And to my surprise there's my outlaw standing at the door
As I look into his blue eye's I can not resist
He pulls me close to him and then a tender kiss

That one moment is worth all the time in the world
He let's me know that; I am still his girl
I may not be his only lover, but love him I did
I'm a lover to the outlaw "Billy the Kid"

Virginia Clark