This Death Warrant may not be a poem in rhyme……BUT, it certainly is Poetic Justice.
Judge Issac Parker’s Death Warrant for a man convicted of rape and murder of a young girl. Judge Parker often called the “Hanging Judge,” operating out of Fort Smith, Arkansas ruled over the lawless land of Indian Territory in the late 1800s. During Judge Parker’s 21 year tenure at Fort Smith, he sentenced 160 men and women to death for convictions of Rape or Murder; of this total, only 79 men actually were executed on the gallows. The Judge did not attend the executions or participate in them in any official capacity.
Note: Oklahoma Territory (what is now basically Western Oklahoma) and Indian Territory (what is now basically Eastern Oklahoma) were seperate areas until the two territories were combined to become the state of Oklahoma, in 1907.
Jose Manuel Miguel Xavier Gonzales,
in a few months it will be Spring,
the snow of Winter will flee away,
the ice will vanish,
and the air will become soft and balmy.
In short, Jose Manuel Xavier Gonzales,
the annual miracle of the year’s awakening will come to pass,
but you won’t be here.
The rivulet will run its purling course to the sea,
the timid desert flowers will put forth their tender shoots,
the glorious valleys of this imperial domain will blossom as the rose,
still you won’t be here.
From every tree top some wildwood songster will carol his mating song,
butterflies will sport in the sunshine,
the busy bee will hum happily as it pursues its accustomed vocation,
the gentle breezes will tease the tassels of wild grasses,
and all nature.
Jose Manuel Miguel Xavier Gonzales, we will be glad,
but you won’t be here to enjoy it,
for I command the Sheriff or some officer or,
officers of this county to lead you out to some remote spot,
swing you up by the neck to a nodding bough of some sturdy oak,
and there let you hang till you are dead, dead, dead.
And then, Jose Manuel Miguel Xavier Gonzales, I command further,
that such officer or officers retire quietly,
from your swinging, dangling corpse,
that the vultures may descend from the heavens,
upon your filthy body and pick the putrid flesh there,
till nothing remains but the bare bleached bones of a cold-blooded,
blood-thirsty, guilty sheep-herding son-of-a-bitch!”