ROBERT F  (Fred) LEE, author

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Are fairy tales only for children, or can all of us enjoy the world of make-believe? This collection of ethereal tales transports young, old and in-between to a world of fantasy, where the pedantic world is forgotten, if only briefly. A place where rocks and trees come to life, and daily reality yields to a mystical and magical universe. Set aside your disbelief, and embrace the unknown.

Fairy tales are escapes into wondrous worlds. It is only our inflexible adult reasoning that tells us that they are just for children. Fables, too, are disdainfully disregarded by grown-ups, in spite of the valuable life lessons that they often provide. It is only yarns and tall tales that are permitted to dwell in the structured world of the adult. I have compiled this collection of silly, inconsequential stories and poems to satisfy the child in any of us that has been handicapped by active imagination, and has been unable to fully embrace the responsible, pedantic adult world.
A few of these little stories were written for my children, as they journeyed from childhood, to adolescence to adulthood. I hope that the tales have allowed them to avoid becoming staid grownups. A few of these yarns were written for staid adults. I am glad to say that they, for a few moments anyway, were able to become irresponsible children again. A couple – specifically, the romantic poems – were written for my wife, who I hope will not be terribly upset that I have shared private thoughts with the world. Many were written just for me. No reason, other than that I like being a perpetual child.
For those of you who dare to explore wondrous worlds, even if you do so in the secrecy of your own hidden sanctums, I welcome you to my haven. Please enjoy, and thank you

Pickin’ Cotton

He was born Mose Henry Cotton, but, being the first son of Henry Willie Cotton, his parents just took to calling him Sonny.  Sonny was born to be unique.  By the age of six, he had made himself a guitar, sort of, from the top and bottom of an old detergent barrel and a length of hard wood.  His playing days had begun.  Unlike the sons of the Deep South, Mose never blew into a harmonica, never found a love for the brass horns as he grew older. Sure, he did occasionally pluck the banjo, even fiddled with the violin some, but Sonny Mose Cotton just preferred to be picking away on his guitar.  So, it was inevitable that his friends took to calling him “Pickin’” Cotton.  It was an almost clever play on words.  But that Mose Cotton sure could play!

By the 1960s, Pickin’ had become one of the most loved blues players in North America.  His own brand of blues could lift the spirits of the most disheartened listener.  Not Delta, Jump, Chicago, Country, Rhythm or any other genre of blues, Mose played a style that bore more resemblance to the wail of a Louisiana swamp bird, or the trill of a southern warbler, or the sweet notes of the meadowlark, oriole or whippoorwill than it did to the nasal and mournful twang of a blues guitar.  Indeed, the sounds that swelled from Cotton’s guitar were akin to the most beautiful sounds of nature.  They were uplifting, while he sang of deep sadness, beguiling and happy when the lyrics talked of oppression and personal loss.

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