Poet tells us to forgive


The Storyteller

Rev. Huey Wood

Dick Brown was the father of my daughter-in-law, Ann. He was something of a renaissance man in Booneville, painting and writing poetry. He also ran a dry goods store, raised hunting dogs and was a lay leader in the Booneville First Methodist Church. Here is one of his poems:


This big Blue Tick hound of old Zeb Jones,

Was the finest dog a man ever owned.

It means a lot in any neighborhood,

To own a hound dog half that good.

Zeb's reputation grew like a weed,

A reflected glory from Old Blue Tick's deeds.

When the fall leaves begin to turn brown,

And down through the trees come tumbling down.

The grapes are purple, the persimmons are gold,

Every possum was as fat as his hide would hold.

You could then hear a familiar sound,

The baying of Old Zeb Jones' big Blue Tick hound.

 Men and dogs reputations grow,

Just like a snow ball the further it rolls.

Now as the years went rolling by,

It was said Old Zeb's Blue Tick never told a lie.

Every time you heard that tree bark sound,

Up that tree a possum could always be found.

You can live a life that is honest and true,

But even then disaster can come to you.

It happened on one bright moonlight night,

Old Blue Tick was baying with all his might.

Zeb and his friend went to the persimmon tree,

And there it was for all to see.

There was only one thing that could be seen by Zeb,

'Twas a bunch of leaves caught in a caterpillar web.

On Old Blue Tick's reputation that very night,

This little mistake caused a terrible blight.

Circumstantial evidence can be mighty strong,

And cause men and dogs irreparable wrong.

Two possums up that same tree on two other nights,

Made Old Blue Tick think he had this one dead to rights.

Many good fellows have committed one little sin,

And their fine reputations have come to an end.

One mistake that comes at last,

Will blot out all the good you have done in the past.

Like all bad news, it spreads like the wind,

About Old Blue Tick committing this sin.

There is great satisfaction to an ordinary man,

To pull great men and dogs to the level they stand.

That's much easier than trying to gain great height,

By doing hard work and living right.

Whenever Old Blue tick would come to someone near,

Critical remarks he could always hear.

They never mentioned all the possums he had treed,

It was just the mistake he had made on the bunch of leaves.

And now we come to the saddest part,

Old Blue Tick just died with a broken heart.

That's quite a poem isn't it?  But this poem is not about Christians. While the lack of forgiveness can bring condemnation to not only those who ere, but those who judge them, a real Christian forgives and helps restore a right relationship to the point it is as if a wrong was never done.