England's Economy (1973) a song

How do you say goodbye to a man

who has worked hard for twenty years.

Well how do you say 'I must let you go,'

and still hold back the tears.

How can you send him into the yard

with his last paycheck in hand.

How can you to a man, a friend,

can he understand.


Well, it's hell my friend

to be a friend

when the work is just not at hand.


Tell me how can you go to church

knowing that he'll be there.

Wish him a happy holiday,

does he know you really care.

And how do you look at his wife,

her children's feet now go bare.


It's hell my friend

to be a friend

when the work is just not there.


How do you say hello to a man,

and talk about the good'ol times.

Knowing that he's dying inside

doesn't have but now time.

How do you say, 'hay, remember Sam,

we all drank at the pub

down the lane?"

"And remember old man Luke,

the guy with the metal cane?"

"Well he died last week,

he always asked of your name."

"And all the chaps at work,

we are mighty grieved,

I know you are the same."


How can you turn out a man

who's worked hard for twenty years.

Well it's hell my friend

to be a friend

when the work is not at hand.


(England's Economy, copyright Steven S. Walsky, 1975.)

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Music and Lyrics
writing stevesw
poetry, narrative, flash fiction, novel
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In 1973, a friend from the UK informed me that she was put on ‘redundancy’ due to economic stress; her life became more stressful. The UK employment situation was still terrible in 1975 when I wrote this.
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