I was born in a valley that was hollowing itself out
Under our feet men were digging
With mandrills and charge
Stripped naked in the heat
Of the dark seams of the earth
I was born in a valley that was dying on its feet
People didn’t seem to notice
One by one the pits closed
Men were moved to other mines
But the valley was thinning.
I was born in a village at a time when deaths shadow
Still haunted the ribboned streets
I grew accustomed to the disappearance
Of men, of the disasters, the mass funerals
For those who died in the depths
Those sombre marching line of men.
I was born in a village where words such as roof-fall,
Explosions, afterdamp a build-up of gas
In the heat of that darkness
Became markers of another time another age
I was born in a place that was dying
Its soul waving I’m leaving, you staying?