Walls of Red Wing

Oh, the age of the inmates

I remember quite freely:

No younger than twelve,

No older 'n seventeen.

Thrown in like bandits

And cast off like criminals,

Inside the walls,

The walls of Red Wing.

.

From the dirty old mess hall

You march to the brick wall,

Too weary to talk

And too tired to sing.

Oh, it's all afternoon

You remember your home town,

Inside the walls,

The walls of Red Wing.

.

Oh, the gates are cast iron

And the walls are barbed wire.

Stay far from the fence

With the 'lectricity sting.

And it's keep down your head

And stay in your number,

Inside the walls,

The walls of Red Wing.

.

Oh, it's fare thee well

To the deep hollow dungeon,

Farewell to the boardwalk

That takes you to the screen.

And farewell to the minutes

They threaten you with it,

Inside the walls,

The walls of Red Wing.

.

It's many a guard

That stands around smilin',

Holdin' his club

Like he was a king.

Hopin' to get you

Behind a wood pilin',

Inside the walls,

The walls of Red Wing.

.

The night aimed shadows

Through the crossbar windows,

And the wind punched hard

To make the wall-siding sing.

It's many a night I pretended to be a-sleepin',

Inside the walls,

The walls of Red Wing.

.

As the rain rattled heavy

On the bunk-house shingles,

And the sounds in the night,

They made my ears ring.

'Til the keys of the guards

Clicked the tune of the morning,

Inside the walls,

The walls of Red Wing.

.

Oh, some of us'll end up

In St. Cloud Prison,

And some of us'll wind up

To be lawyers and things,

And some of us'll stand up

To meet you on your crossroads,

From inside the walls,

The walls of Red Wing.

.

Copyright 1963; renewed 1991 Special Rider Music

First release: The Bootleg Series Volumes 1-3, 1991

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