The second part of Kazimierz Kutz’s Silesian trilogy, in the form of a poetic ballad, presents the great love of a young married couple in the context of a victorious struggle of Polish miners with German owners of the mines. The picture shows the specificity of Silesian culture, traditions, customs and respect for work. The grey and black mine shafts constitute a visual contrast with the colorful pomp of folk costumes and beautifully sun-lit miners’ houses.
Silesia, mid-1930s. Jaś, a young miner who loves his wife and two sons, works in one of the mines. The mine is to be closed down by its German owner who plans to flood it with water. Afraid to lose the only source of their income, the miners decide to go on strike. Jaś hesitates, but eventually he joins his fellow workers. A strike committee is established, headed by Hubert Siersza. The miners remain underground and are willing to talk only there. The local community supports the strikers, organizing demonstrations and marches in front of the mine, with Silesian brass bands playing music. The strike committee decides to send Grudniok to Warsaw. He is to present the miners’ demands, but his mission fails. The miners decide to start a hunger strike. The management of the mine has no intention of changing plans. Desperate protesters announce that if the mine is flooded with water, they will go down with it. They will not come out to the surface. Their declaration changes the course of action. The authorities agree to accept the miners’ terms. The mine will continue to operate and no one will be punished for joining the strike. The miners, hungry and exhausted, come out to the surface, where they are awaited by their wives. Jaś, carefully led by his caring wife, goes back home.