Thursday, 2 December 2010

A sad day in New Zealand

Today was a very poignant and sad day, as New Zealanders grieved for the 29 miners who died in the Pike River Mine disaster of Friday 19th November.  A memorial service was held in Greymouth ( the town nearest the mine, and where many of the miners lived)  As yet, their bodies have not been able to be recovered.  At 2.00pm today, the country stood still and quiet for two minutes to remember.  At my office, we all gathered round together and stood in silence then our team lead, read out the 29 names.... very emotional.  This amazing poem was written by Sean Plunket - and I'd like to share it...

They came from near and far away
The men of Pike to work that day
The afternoon shift way down deep
Beneath the mountains oh so steep
A long way in but further out
The afternoon shift sets about
A job not flash but hard and trying
A job that holds the risk of dying

From seventeen to sixty two
They start their shift to see it through
For one his first, for all their last
How could they know there’d be a blast?
For all at once no siren whining
Suddenly the worst in mining
Dust and rubble fill the air
A loader driver thrown clear
Just one other finds the light
The rest are hidden from our sight

And so we learn as news is spread
The news that mining families dread
It’s up at Pike there’s an explosion
Faces drop and hearts are frozen
Who, how many, where and why ----
Will they make it ---- will they die

Fathers, husbands, brothers, sons
Coasters, Kiwis, Aussies, Poms
Mates and friends who we are seeking
Methane gas from coal seams leaking
Vents exploded, phones unheeded
Level heads and strength are needed
The world above unites as one
To bring the missing to the sun

Rescue teams are standing by
As holes are drilled and experts try
To find a way that’s safe and sound
To rescue those beneath the ground
Could robots work where men are mortal
To pierce the dangers of that portal
But alas all effort fails
The darkness of the mine prevails

A second blast of rock and thunder
Hope and prayers are rent asunder
A nation weeps and Coasters mourn
Pike falls silent, dark, forlorn
A hole remains within the ground
Devoid of joy, of life, of sound

Another hole within the heart
Of those forever set apart
From those they loved who went to toil
Digging coal beneath the soil
Those who gave their lives that day
To work a shift for honest pay
They wait at rest within their mine
The men of Pike, the Twenty Nine

Sean Plunket 

thank you for taking the time to read this post.  I pray for the families of the lost miners and ask you to do the same.


Pajalu said...

Hi Dawn,

Thanks for sharing that poem. It truely is a sad time. Especially after seeing so many make it from simular situations. Hugs to you all xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

donna mikasa said...

Thanks for sharing the poem, Dawn. My heart goes out to the families of those miners--a sad day, indeed.

Barb said...

So sad, Dawn. I'm glad you shared the poem and I will keep these families in my prayers.

Anita Rex said...

I am so sorry Dawn what a terrible thing to have happened. What a beautiful poem that expresses so much. Thank you for sharing this.

Nancy said...

Dawn, I'm so glad you shared that poem, it is so beautiful and touching! My heart and prayers go out to all the families.
bless you.

Suzanne C said...

Beautiful poem and so sorry to hear of the sad event. I too think of those families and pray for them.