Join me as we drop back to a time when our independent brothers and sisters fought valiantly for a land rich in game, steeped in the lore of her stories that would carry down through the ages singing the praises of her young men and women who would die for what they believed if necessary.
Margaret trembled as she stood on her tiptoes in the warm soft dirt of the street trying hard to see what was moving slowly toward them, making that wonderful sound. She tugged on the coat sleeve of the dapper gentleman standing next to her who was trying in vain to ignore her. “Yes what is it?!!!” he said with consternation. Fairly leaping up and down with excitement, she begged him, “Please tell me what was that instrument that was making those happy sounds?” “Ah”, said the gentleman as he pulled on his snakeskin gloves, “you must mean the Calliope” he smiled. “Ca-lo-pee” sounded out Margaret. “No” said the gentleman, “Call -li- o-pee”.
Margaret turned and her eyes followed the puffs of dust forming billows in the parade’s wake. As the shrill voice of her mother cut into her reverie, “Margaret get in here! The customers are needin’ food and I need another pot of gravy!” Margaret hollered “Yes Mother” and pulled at her apron which was covered with the last two days of spatters and bits of food. Quietly to herself like an oath she whispered, “Someday I’m going to have a little girl and when I do, I’m going to name her Calliope.”
The following years found Callie, now a tall, lithe beauty, and her parents and young twin brothers answering a call from the Mexican Government to settle the sparsely inhabited land that someday would become known as Texas. No one knew yet of the all-encompassing sexual needs, the fierce defense of her family, or along with her beautiful Mulatto friend, the parts they would play in the fight for Texas’ statehood.
“Warm winds blowing
Heating blue sky
And a road that goes forever
I’m going to Texas
We got to get out of here
We got to get out of here
I’m going to Texas”
Chris Rea wrote and performs this song on the album Texas (1989) and on the album The Road To Hell (1989).
As the pink shards of light stabbed the night sky heralding a new dawn, a fresh chapter was beginning in Callie’s life. No one could guess as to how it would end.
The noise and clatter of silverware, with chairs scraping back on the wood floor plus an occasional belch signified the end of one of Margaret Parker’s delicious dinners. “Miz Parker, we are shore gonna miss yer fine cookin’!’ said a big gruff looking cowboy as he took off his hat while bowing slightly in Margaret’s direction as he filed out of the squeaky front door. ‘Why Thank you Mr. Douglas, I am glad to have served all of you fine fellows.” Margaret replied. One of the local boys piped up, “Miz Parker, if my Mama could cook like you, why I’d never leave home.” A few hearty chuckles followed as Callie entered the room and stretching her arms out said, “Here, Mama, Let me carry some of those dishes.” Before she could take them, a loud bang startled everyone as a tall brutish stranger kicked his chair back and hollered in a gruff voice, “ And speakin’ of men enjoyin’ their women’s cookin’, just where is Ol’ Parker hisself?? Oh yeah, I recall seein’ him down at the Blue Goose earlier pourin’ down a bottle of hard liquor and snugglin’ up to Sadra.”
Before anyone could drop their eyes in embarrassment for Mrs. Parker, as fast as lightning, Callie had magically whipped out from behind her a musket and pointed it expertly at the center of his forehead. “I am ordering you out of here immediately” she growled, the veins standing out in her neck, her eyes cold as steel. The stranger began to smile a lecherous smile her way when he stopped in this tracks as a second Brown Bess appeared and Margaret stepped out from behind Callie and in a now threatening voice that no one had heard before, she uttered, “And don’t you ever come back or it will be the last thing your sorry ass does in this life”. He must have believed her because he high tailed it out of the door but not before yelling back “You and that daughter of yers will pay fer this!” and he disappeared into the dark night.
The eatery emptied out amid thanks and best wishes for their trip. Margaret and Callie dropped into a couple of chairs and Callie put her arm around Margaret’ trembling shoulder. “Mama pay him no mind, now that we are leaving all will be ok.” “It’s the only reason I agreed to leave my home Callie, one last try to make him remember who he is and that he has a family who is following his dream with him. But I fear It will only lead to heartbreak and death.” Callie, the young teenage daughter, held her mother in her arms as she cried in deep heart-wrenching sobs.