I Am A Miner

“I Picked And Shoveled All Day And All Night,
Nothing Moved From The Left Or The Right”

Growing up in mining towns, there were many

Mines, mills, and shafts.

We lived in one town where a mill was a short

Distance down the road, and when I would

Try to go to sleep, the sound of the mill caused

Groaning and moanings, setting up deep crevices

In my mind.

It seemed as if there was a monster with huge steel teeth

Writhing in pain, as it grunts and groans, glaring

With its fearful eyes, its tongue swinging back and

Forth, sand oozing out earth’s tailings

Here are a few descriptive poetic words to try to

Share from a child’s perspective, when the minds

Eye becomes overwhelmed;

I go to work every day with

My pick and shovel but

Not for silver and gold

The more I shovel the deeper

It gets

It is dark in here!

The earthen womb bares

Memories seen from the

Eye and heard from the ear

I pick and shovel all day and

All night, nothing moves from

The left or right

Icicles in this cave drops tears

On my mind

Drip! Drip! Never goes away


I fell asleep to the radio, the

Station went off at half past


Once again I fell asleep to the

Droning of the mill down the


The conveyor belts vibrate

And jump

Noise unbearable to hear

My mind fell into a nightmare

Many wheels spinning and

Turning in my head

Clocks ticking and chiming all

At once

Spinning, ticking, tossing in

My sleep

Sighing, crying, grinding my


Abruptly I awoke, opened wide

My eyes

Fears tucked away in the crevices

Of my mind, no peace did I find


From sleep deprivation, uncertainty, and trauma

Many years later the reason for all of this nighttime

Fright would unfold!

Poems selected from ‘The Mining Town Girl’

Read more at: www.donnaspoetry.com

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