Mudcat Café message #1597021 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #85261   Message #1597021
Posted By: Joe Offer
04-Nov-05 - 12:07 AM
Thread Name: DTStudy: Songs of Jean Ritchie
Subject: DTStudy: West Virginia Mine Disaster
WEST VIRGINIA MINING DISASTER
(Jean Ritchie)

Say, did you see him walking? it was early this morning
He passed by your house on his way to the coal
He was tall, he was slender, and his blue eyes so tender
His occupation was miner, West Virginia his home

It was just about noon, I was feeding the children
Ben Moseley come running for to give us the news
Number eight is all flooded, many men are in danger
And we don't know their number, but we fear they're all doomed

So I picked up the baby and I left all the others
For to comfort each other and pray for our own
There's Timmy, fourteen, and there's John not much younger
Soon their own time will be coming to go down the black hole

Now if I had the money to do more than just feed them
I'd give them good learning, the best could be found
And when they grew up they'd be checkers and weighers
And not spend their life drilling in the dark underground

And it's what will I tell to my three little children?
And what will I tell his dear mother at home?
And it's what will I tell to my poor heart that's dying?
My heart that's surely dying since my darling is gone

Say, did you see him walking? it was early this morning
He passed by your house on his way to the coal
He was tall, he was slender, and his blue eyes so tender
His occupation was miner, West Virginia his home

@work @mining
Copyright Jean Ritchie
filename[ WVMINING
MC

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Corrected Version:

WEST VIRGINIA MINE DISASTER
(Jean Ritchie)

Say, did you see him going? it was early this morning?
He passed by your houses on his way to the coal.
He was tall, he was slender, and his dark eyes so tender,
His occupation was mining, West Virginia his home.

It was just before twelve, I was feeding the children.
Ben Mosely came running to bring us the news;
Number eight is all flooded, many men are in danger,
And we don't know their number, but we fear they're all doomed.

So I picked up the baby and I left all the others
To comfort each other and pray for our own;
There's Timmy, fourteen, and there's John not much younger,
Their own time soon will be coming to go down the black hole.

O if I had the money to do more than just feed them,
I'd give them good learning, the best could be found.
Then when they'd grow up, they'd be checkers and weighers,
And not spend their time drilling in the dark under ground.

Now what can I say to his poor little children?
Or what can I tell his old mother at home?
Or what can I say to my heart that's clear-broken?
To my heart that's clear-broken if my darling is gone?

Say, did you see him going? it was early this morning?
He passed by your houses on his way to the coal.
He was tall, he was slender, and his dark eyes so tender,
His occupation was mining, West Virginia his home.

© 1969, 1971, Geordie Music Publishing.

from Jean Ritchie - Celebration of Life: her songs...her poems (1971, Geordie Music Publishing)