A Miner's Pick

December 10, 2008
By Patrick Proctor, Audubon, IA

The miner’s pick strikes the black wall
Soot and debris fly
As a large chunk of stone
Breaks off and goes its separate way
The stone is me, a lump of coal
“I’m finally free,” I shout
But the miner’s gloved hands come
And chuck me in with the lot
Along the cart goes, with me and my brethren inside
Toward processing we go
The train lurches forward. Into the melting pot of life I drop
Boiled down, my features are refined
But unlike the rest, not all of me was assimilated
One last glinting stone stands gleaming
Through a wired grate the gloop is poured
But I stay on top
The shocked eyes stare at me
With insurmountable surprise
As they rinse me off, they see
That I was beauty in disguise

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