Mrs W B Griffiths, 1880.
Published in Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate
Monday 24 May 1880, page 3
Photograph from our collection: Miners on the pit top at Lymington Colliery
Let the cry from Northumberland ring through the land!
Ho! Trades, to the rescue, and help us to stand:
For the hand of injustice is raised to destroy
They refuse arbitration, and strangers employ.
Have we not striven the masters to serve?
To hold them together have strained every nerve
Some are in prison for serving their cause,
Because they respected the Vend and its laws;
And now they reduce us some thirty percent -
Take it or leave is their only comment.
Oh God! It is hard for the men to look on:
Soon the stores will be closed, and supplies will be gone!
God bless the brave seamen, grasp each tarry fist:
When the trouble came on they were first to assist.
The meaning of strike they often have heard;
Hunger and poverty ring through the ward -
The fiend of starvation has claimed its own,
His skeleton finger beats time to its groan.
And shrieks with delight, when the blackleg hell see,
Oh! Join in the work of destruction with me.
Take the bread from our little ones, drive them to worse,
Till they beg at your door for a coin from your purse.
The temper of mothers and wives it will try
To watch the blackleg to his work sneaking by;
To know he is taking the dress from your back,
The shoe from your feet, the bread that you lack.
Call on the public to help in our need,
If they sympathise with us, to show it in dead.
Many who climb to the top of the hill
Set a stone rolling: it stops not until
The bottom is reached. In its fall it may crush
Some one who loved and aided you much.
What does it matter? The end is obtained!
Who cares for the cries of the mangled and maimed!
Oh! Nasters be merciful! Do not forget
We have raised you to wealth now repay us the debt.
Can you reply your demand is unjust?
Have you not ground us as low as the dust?
Grant us the sliding scale, we are content,
Give the signal for work, let the blacklegs be sent
To repent at their leisure the wront they have done
In striving to take from our children each crumb.
Let Labour and Capital go hand in hand, and peace and prosperity smile on the land.
Mrs W.B. Griffiths, Junction, Newcastle
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