Union Songs

Until Another Man's Killed

A poem by Merv Lilley©Merv Lilley 1963
Music by Bill Berry

In Mt. Isa mine a man was killed,
Twelve hundred feet below,
A man crushed up by a fall of lead,
Twelve hundred feet below.

The miners came to the surface then,
For twenty-four hours below
When a man is killed they mourn a man,
For twenty-four hours below.

A Yankee cartel owned the mine,
So full of lead below,
A Yankee boss he watched the line,
Of the funeral from below.

"Well goddam man," at last he said,
" if you stop work for a man that's dead
You never will work again," he said,
And he was fairly blowing.

"If you stop work for twenty-four,
You never will work no goddam more;
We'll kill a man a day," he said,
" When we get really going.

"They bury their comrades with the rest,
And watch while his grave is filled, 0.
Then they go to work with a right good will,


Many thanks to Merv Lilley for permission to add this poem to the Union Songs collection. It was published in What About The People a collection of poems by Dorothy Hewett and Merv Lilley published by the National Council of the Realist Writers in 1963.

Many thanks to Bill Berry who added the tune.

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