Wednesday, January 12, 2011


They worked us hard, in unsafe conditions.
We were afraid of the falling rock.
The limestone and coal dust.
Diesel engines spewed black exhaust.
They told us there were scrubbers on the engines.
This would protect our lungs.
I coughed up black mucous for years.
I showed a jar of it to my union steward.
He looked at me as if I were insane.
Finally he said, "Take it to the safety man".
The safety man didn't do shit.
He was probably paid off by the company.
OSHA didn't do anything either.
I was labeled a trouble maker.
I thought I was a good union man.
I did my job.
I just knew there were many things wrong.
Guys were getting injured.
Some lost their lives.
Everyone was afraid of losing their jobs.
These Oil, Coal, and rock mining conglomerates
never cared about the working man.
They despise the unions.
They got away with whatever they could get away with.
They hired scabs if we went on strike.
We were hauled off to jail, for defending our jobs.
They killed us with guns and hired thugs.
Yes, this still happens today.
Yeah, it's happening right now!
I see children hungry.
They're crying for something to eat.
My union brothers and sisters are suffering.
We have to draw the line somewhere.
Decide which side you are on.
I'm broken now.
My lungs don't work.
My legs don't work.
I have painful arthritis from the dampness.
I worked underground, and outside in freezing cold.
And I'm afraid of what the future holds for me.
I hope my union pension and health and welfare,
doesn't go bankrupt.
These guys in the news media with their multi-million dollar jobs,
are blaming the unions and American workers for all kinds of problems.
They are calling us lazy.
These goons in the news media are the mouthpieces of corporate America.
They ought to be ashamed of themselves.
The owners and stockholders of huge companies are making obscene amounts of money.
Workers of America have no jobs, and can't make ends meet anymore.
Yet, they are raising our taxes for our own good.
The wealthy are the beneficiaries of all kinds of tax loopholes.
I'm not smart enough or rich enough to retain legal experts,
to see how I can screw my government out of tax dollars.
I guess I'll just have to pay up.
They say I'm milking the system for all it's worth.
They call guys like me, bums, malcontents, and rabble rousers.
Now, I ask you:
Who's the real culprit in America today?
It sure ain't the American worker, by God!


  1. Right on! You may have black lungs but those guys you are talking about......they have colorless souls...a blank nothingness that when it will go on to nothingness!

  2. My daughter and I enjoyed seeing you, the other day!...Send me your poem, Mike!