October 22, Joe Manchin’s Coal Mines (parody to “Dark as a Dungeon”)

October 22, Joe Manchin’s Coal Mines  (1)


Come all you progressives, with programs so fine;

And don’t let your dreams fall deep down a coal mine.

Joe Manchin’s a miner, the mine’s in his soul

And his campaigns are funded by profits from coal.


(Chorus 1)  Joe Manchin’s not budgin’ so what can you do?

Excuses are many; solutions are few.

Will he ever relent?  Will the sun ever shine?

Can progressives pull Manchin up out of his mine?


Republican senators, even today,

Will let our democracy just slip away.

Donations from donors, fine dinners, fine wines,

Like Joe, they are faithful to oil, gas, and mines.


(Chorus 2)  We won’t live forever; the ages shall roll.

Our bodies decay and then turn into coal.

Will Joe Manchin look down from the heavenly dome?

Will he look up from hell, his soul’s more likely home?


And senator Sinema’s stubborn as well;

She may have her reasons but she will not tell.

She’s raised lots of funds from purveyors of drugs.

Confirm or deny it?  The senator shrugs.


(Chorus 3)  So far, she’s not budgin’, so what can we do?

Evasions are many; solutions are few.

Will she ever relent?  Will the sun ever shine?

Can Joe Biden pull Kyrsten up out of the mine?


  • May be sung to “Dark as a Dungeon,” a song about the life of coal miners, by Merle Travis, (1946.) It has been covered many times.  Perhaps the best known is by Johnny Cash.  I have used Travis’s original rhyme words for all the verses about Joe Manchin but the song changed quite a bit over time in different recordings, even performances by Merle Travis.