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The Puddler's Tale

This song is by Stan Rogers and appears on the album From Coffee House to Concert Hall (1999).

They neither know of night or day
They night and day pour out their thunder
As every ingot rolls away
A dozen more are split asunder
There is a sign beside the gate
"Eleven Days" since a man lay dying
Now every shift brings fear and hate
And shaken men in terror crying

The molten rivers boil away
A fiery brew hell never equaled
To their profits the bosses pray
And Mammon sings in his grim cathedral
His attendants join the choir
And heaven help us if we're shirking
Stoke the furnace-altar fire
And just be thankful that we're working

Do this, then, charge the hoppers high
Lest you endure the foreman's choler
Do this, then, drain the tankards dry
And let us toast the almighty dollar
That keeps us chained here before the fire
Where heat and noise set the weak a-quaking
At the siren's infernal cry
The open hearth sets the ground to shaking

Do this, then, raise the babies high
And make them shriek with love and laughter
Do this, then, kiss your woman's eyes
And raise a song unto the rafters
Wash the steel mill from your hair
Heap the table till it's breaking
'Nor let terror enter there
And in the hearth set the glasses breaking

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