California Cottonfields

Written By: Dallas Frazier
Recorded By:  Merle Haggard

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My driftin' memory goes back to the spring of '43,
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When I was just a child in momma's arms.
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My daddy plowed the ground and promised someday we would leave
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This run-down mortgaged Oklahoma farm.
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Then one night I heard my daddy sayin' to my momma
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That he'd finally saved enough to go.
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California was his dream, a paradise, for he had seen
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Pictures in magazines that told him so.

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California Cottonfields,
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Where labor camps were filled with weary men with broken dreams.
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California Cottonfields,
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As close to wealth as daddy ever came.

Nearly everything we had was sold or left behind,
From my daddy's plow to the soup that momma canned.
Some folks came to say farewell or see what all we had to sell;
Some just came to shake my daddy's hand.
That model A was loaded down and California bound;
A change of luck was just 4 days away.
But the only change that I remember seeing in my daddy
Was when his dark hair turned to silver grey.