I hear that prayer and praying
Will change this world around
I fold my hands I bow my head
I kneel down on the ground.
I prayed and prayed by nite & day
And then I prayed some more
I prayed till my tongue was dry as dust
I prayed till my knees had sores.
Will prayer change shacks to decent homes?
Will prayer change sickness into health?
Will prayer change hate to works of love?
Will prayer get me my right to vote?
Will prayer give jobs at honest pay?
Will prayer bring stomach full of food?
Will prayer make rich treat poor folks right?
Will prayer take out the Ku Klux Klan?
Will prayer cut down the hoodlum bands?
Will prayer stop the lynchbug hands?
If all of these things my prayers can do,
I’ll pray till I am black and blue.
If prayer will bring us union love,
I’ll pray and pray and pray some more.
I’ll pray all day from door to door
And fall at nite to pray some more
My prayer with a union label.
Words: Woody Guthrie (1949) | Music: Billy Bragg
Billy Bragg: tenor banjo, vocal
Eliza Carthy: violin
Ben Ivitsky: viola