Young Jimmy was a real good bloke. Helped his neighbours – dead set: an Aussie battler through and through. Sick wife, half a tribe of kids, hard times and a drought. What does a young bloke do to keep his family together? In an area where country and cattle run wild, and many young cattle aren’t branded, some “mistakes” are made. This one’s a real laugh!! Hope you enjoy it.
By the way, it could never have happened. Or could it??
Young Jimmy lived out in the scrub, way up north, in Queensland.
He mustered cattle ’round the place and then applied a cross brand.
The stock squad wandered through his yard one hot and dusty day –
Found twenty head of stolen stock: handcuffed him straight away.
The small bush district court was packed the day Jimmy came to trial,
Thirty degrees in the water bag – humidity was vile.
His counsel said “he’s innocent!” Jim’s too decent a bloke!”
Jimmy’s mates who watched the trial thought it must have been a joke.
Everybody knew that Jim was dealin’ in “warm” cattle;
The season had been flamin’ hard, with ten kids, he’d had a battle.
His Missus, she’d been really sick, with doctors’ bills arrivin’,
Dead set; anyone would know how hard it was survivin’.
His other well known attribute was how he helped his neighbours;
A “scallywag” but a “good bloke” too he’d help ’em with their labours.
And in that hot and stuffy court sat twelve “good” men: and “true,”
Who mostly knew young Jimmy and knew he was “true blue.”
The prosecution closed the case with evidence so strong –
There seemed no doubt our Jimmy was completely in the wrong.
The jury didn’t argue much – there wasn’t any sense:
There really hadn’t been a stitch of what you’d call “defence.”
They trundled in and took their seats – the foreman stood up, proud,
And when asked for the verdict, in a strong voice, said, real loud:
“We find young Jim not guilty: we’ve had a ‘dinkum’ battle,
But we all agree he really should return the twenty cattle!”
The judge near done a double flip – he almost broke his gavel!
How could he ever sort this out? Who could, this mess, unravel?
He thundered at the foreman: “You’ve all made a mistake!!
Go back and re-consider- a new decision, make!!”
Three hours, it took, ’till they came back – not smilin’ any longer!
The temperature was risin’ and the tension gettin’ stronger.
The foreman stood up straight away – his strength they wouldn’t rattle:
“We find young Jim not guilty – and he can keep the flamin’ cattle!!!!!”
© – Dennis Scanlon