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Fighter Pilot Poetry

Posted by Jolly on September 19, 2012

olds_kill1_edited-1.jpg

recieved the following e-mail from the author of this poem:

This poem was published in 2001 in an aviation anthology named "Because I Fly" edited by Col. Helmut Reda, USAF, (ret.) a graduate of Embry-Riddle University in Florida. The author is Captain Michael J. Larkin, TWA, (Ret.) Aviation cadet Class 61-Foxtrot USAF, and veteran from the 303rd Bomb Wing at Davis-Monthan AFB, Tucson AZ. The poem is dedicated to Major General Don Ross, Commander of Bartow AFB Florida in 1960, Williams AFB, AZ, and several fighter wings in Laos and Vietnam. General Ross lives in Carson City, Nevada. His biography is available from the USAF and google. 

Fraternally,

Michael J. Larkin (mikellark@aol.com)
Captain B-747 TWA (Ret.)

 

The Fighter Pilot

I think I've known a million lads,
Who say they love the sky;
Who'd all be aviators,
And not afraid to fly!

For Duty, Honor, Country,
Their courage I admire!
But it takes more than courage, son,
To get to be a flyer.

When you are only twelve years old
Of course you want to fly!
And tho' you know not what is death,
You're not afraid to die.

But of the million, more or less,
All must have perfect eyes;
So only half a million now,
Can dream of future skies.

Then comes high school, science, math;
Some choose the easy way:
Football, cars, and dating girls;
Teen pleasures hold their sway.

And of the quarter million left,
One half go on to schools;
The other half will dream and drift,
And never learn the rules.

Now comes the day of testing,
Eight hours of Stanine hell;
On every subject known to man,
Four- fifths will not do well.

The one in five who pass this test
Apply for flying schools,
The application boards will now
Eliminate the fools.

Then comes two days of nakedness,
Flight surgeons poke and prod;
To pass this flying physical
One needs to be a god!

And now, five hundred lucky souls
Will start their pre-flight days;
Endure demerits, hunger, cold,
As upperclassmen haze.

One- half survive this mental game,
And go to primary schools,
But only half will hack the course,
Move on to Basic rules.

Two hundred fifty now will try
To pass those Basic tests;
Formation flight soon separates,
The " tiger" from the rest.

One hundred twenty five will then
Pin on those pilot wings;
The best become hot fighter jocks;
The rest fly other things.

Some will die while learning those
Essential combat skills;
Some will die in combat,
Some will score their "kills".

But they have learned a lesson,
Sometimes lost on you and me;
We must always fight for Freedom,
Because freedom's never free!

He's a knight in shining armor,
That the cruel tyrants fear;
He's that deadly drop of venom
On the tip of freedom's spear.

Engaging him in battle is a course
That only fools would choose;
He's the world's fiercest warrior,
For he has the most to lose.

So when you see that fighter pilot,
Standing at the bar;
Taking out the garbage,
Or tuning up his car.

You'd best walk up and offer him
Your thanks, extend your hand;
He's that rare "one in a million" who
Protects this sacred land. 

Comments:

Posted by acsunrize on
Excellent summation of the facts in petry.
Posted by ROBINARMOUR on
"It’s not that jet pilots lack the ability to show love and affection.
It’s simply that there’s seldom anyone else involved."

Robin Armour
Cadet Class 57-U
Bryan AFB, TX
Posted by Jolly on
Holy shit Robin, that's funny!

Jolly
Posted by butch71 on
Good poem even though it ryme and I'am not a poet.
Posted by mikellark on
This poem was published in 2001 in an aviation anthology named "Because I Fly" edited by Col. Helmut Reda, USAF, (ret.) a graduate of Embry-Riddle University in Florida. The author is Captain Michael J. Larkin, TWA, (Ret.) Aviation cadet Class 61-Foxtrot USAF, and veteran from the 303rd Bomb Wing at Davis-Monthan AFB, Tucson AZ. The poem is dedicated to Major General Don Ross, Commander of Bartow AFB Florida in 1960, Williams AFB, AZ, and several fighter wings in Laos and Vietnam. General Ross lives in Carson City, Nevada. His biography is available from the USAF and google.

Fraternally,

Michael J. Larkin (mikellark@aol.com)
Captain B-747 TWA (Ret.)
Posted by Jolly on
Thanks Michael for that background on the poem, and thanks visiting FPU! I'll be sure to give you the credit you deserve for such a great poem.

Jolly
Posted by mikellark on
I hate to admit this, but I made a mistake!LOL I trusted my memory instead of looking up the facts..I had to go play golf! This poem was first published in the TWA Retired Pilot's magazine, TARPA TOPICs in the July 2004 edition..it was not in "Because I Fly", altho I do have four poems in that aviation poetry anthology by Helmut reda, COL., USAF.
Another great site is www.landings.com/poetry where my poem, "One in a Million" is listed among many other poems by several pilots.

Fraternally, Mike Larkin
Posted by ROBINARMOUR on
.
"Dad, when I grow up I want to be a jet pilot."

"I'm sorry son, but you can't do both."
.
Posted by ROBINARMOUR on
USAF Pilot's Opinion on Drones
Drones will not be late to briefings, start fights at happy hour, destroy clubs, attempt to seduce others' dates, spill flaming hookers, purchase huge watches, insult other Services, sing "O'Leary's Balls," dance on tables, yell ~ "Show us your tits!!!" or do all of the other things that we know win wars !"
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