“When Louanne Met Lucy in Prison”

Louanne Bowden was sent to the Mississippi Penitentiary for Women after being convicted of murdering her husband, Ronnie Raney (see song, “One Time Too Many“).  Prison was an unlikely place for someone of Louanne’s background to end up, but there she was (see song, “Louanne in Vicksburg“).  The fact that she killed Ronnie as a result of his constant physical abuse did not mitigate the verdict.  Only years later would her case be reviewed and she would be released for time served when the charge was changed from murder to justifiable homicide (see song “A Waxahachie Funeral“).

However, while Louanne was serving her twenty year sentence Lucy Cooper was also sent to this prison on an 18 month sentence for distribution of controlled substance, marijuana.  Although Lucy put up a brash and strong front, she was in fact a fragile woman, unable to cope with life behind bars.  Shortly before being considered and most likely to be released on parole, a little shy of 12 months into her sentence, Lucy succumbed to depression and killed herself with an heroin overdose (see also song, “Levi and Lucy“).

When Louanne Met Lucy In Prison

When Louanne met Lucy in prison
Lou was halfway through her twenty
For killin’ Ronnie Raney
Who hit her once too many
Lucy would talk all about Levi
In words tender and soft
It was old friends and old sins
Got Lucy caught

Ain’t that how it is sometimes?
Ain’t that how it is sometimes?
You’re on the verge of change
Life sends you the same ol’ same

They gave Lucy eighteen months
Easy time for most but for Lucy hard
Day by day she faded away
Behind stone walls and steel bars
Louanne tried to keep an eye on Lucy
Easy in there to come to harm
August night when they found her
Needle was still in Lucy’s arm

Ain’t that how it is sometimes …

Louanne got word to Levi
Said it best she knew how
Lucy only had six weeks left
She ain’ never gettin’ out
Levi read that letter and then
Put it in his dresser drawer
Got drunk in Vicksburg went a little further
Did a little more

© 2017 Frank David Leone, Jr./Highway 80 Music (ASCAP)

Published by

f. d. leone