1. Cotton

From the recording Deep December Dreams

the cotton blossom and a children's jump rope verse


Cotton by Mary Rocap

Traveling home on 17 upon the coastal plain
Looks like we’re gonna get the day’s predicted rain
Earth is stripped of color leaving gray and ruddy brown
Fields of naked cotton stalks between old Southern towns

In days gone by, a long ways back, when red dirt stained my feet
I’d sit among the tidy rows not mindful of the heat
Though I’d watch intently I never could discern
The moment when from white to red the cotton blossom turned

There’s a part of me that misses life dependent on the soil
There are mysteries and meanings mixed up in the sweat and toil
And how is it that I’m old now, when did that come to be?
From creamy white to bloody red, how did I fail to see?

Cotton, first day white
Next day red
Then it shrivels up
That’s what the children said about cotton
Talking ‘bout cotton

And, here I am still in the land of cotton
Old times here are best forgotten
Look away, look away, look away Dixie Land
(this last bit is not how it was recorded; it is how I would sing it now if I recorded it again)