Take a look at these hands, Lord,
They’re worn and rough.
My face scarred with coal marks,
My language is tough.
But you know in the heart, Lord,
Lies the soul of a man
Who toils at a living
That few men can stand
There’s sulphur and coal dust
And sweat on my brow.
To live like a rich man,
I’d never learn how.
But if you’ve got a corner
When my work is through,
I’d be mighty proud to live
Neighbors with you.
Each dawn as I rise, Lord,
I know all to well…
I face only one thing:
A pit filled with hell.
To scratch out a living
The best that I can.
But deep in this heart
Lies the soul of a man.
With black covered faces
And hard calloused hands,
We ride the dark tunnels,
Our work to begin.
To labor and toil
As we harvest the coal
We silently pray,
Lord, please harvest our souls
Just a corner in Heaven
When I’ve grown too old
And my back it won’t bend, Lord,
To shovel the coal.
Lift me out of the pit, Lord.
Where the sun never shines,
‘Cause it get mighty weary
Down there in the mine.
But I’d rather be me, Lord.
Though no riches I show,
Though tired and weary.
I’m just glad to know
When the Great Seal is broken
The pages will tell
That I’ve already spent
My time in hell.
I hope that it touched your soul like it did mine. Coal mining is a scary profession. But so many people do it because it's good pay. I have another poem written by a coal miner's wife about her husband who in 1980 had a rock fall on him and crush his back. She was inspired to write this poem:
Way down deep inside the Kentucky coal mines,
A lot of brave men is what you’ll find
Who risk their lives by night and day,
For lots of hard work and very little pay
They risk their lives day in and day out,
For it’s their families they worry about
They worry about clothes and shoes for their feet,
They worry about bills and food to eat.
They don’t get enough pay for what they must do,
Some call them crazy others call them fools
If you ask them why, here’s what they will say,
There’s no better job with any better pay.
It’s dark in there so you miners beware,
Watch out for each other and miners take care
Keep your light shining; keep it at all times
So your way back out you’ll be able to find.
Let’s all say a prayer as they enter in,
God let them come out and see daylight again
God please watch over these brave Kentucky men.
So let's pray for all of our coal miners! Because we know how dangerous the job really is. Trust that God will bring them back to us everyday! AMEN!