It was the third of June, another sleepy, dusty Delta
I was out choppin' cotton and my brother was baling
At dinner time we stopped and walked back to the house
to eat

And Mama hollered out the back door "y'all
remember to wipe your feet"
Then she said "I got some news this morning from
Chocktow Ridge
Today Billy Joe MacAllister jumped off the Tallahachee

Papa said to Mama as he passed around the black eyed
"Well Billy Joe never had a lick of sense, pass
the biscuits, please
There's five more acres in the lower forty I got to
And Mama said it was shame about Billy Joe, anyhow
Seems like nothing ever comes to no good on Chocktow
And now Billy Joe MacAllister's jumped off the
Tallahachee Bridge

Brother said he recollected when he and Tom and Billy
Put a frog down my back at the Carrol County picture
And wasn't I talkin' to him after church last Sunday
I'll have another piece of apple pie, you know, it
don't seem right'
I saw him at the sawmill yesterday on Choctow Ridge
And now you tell me Billy Joe jumped off the
Tallahatchee Bridge

Mama said to me "Child, what's happened to your
I've been cooking all morning and you haven't touched
a single bite
That nice young preacher, Brother Taylor, dropped by
Said he'd be pleased to have dinner on Sunday, oh, by
the way,
He said he saw a girl that looked a lot like you on
Chocktow Ridge
And she and Billy Joe was throwing something off the
Tallahachee Bridge"

A year has come and gone since we heard the news about
Billy Joe
Brother married Becky Thompson, they bought a store in
There was a virus going 'round, Papa caught it and he
died last Spring
And now Mama doesn't seem to wanna do much of anything
And me, I spend a lot of time picking flowers up on
Chocktow Ridge
And drop them into the muddy water off the Tallahachee

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