A Poem written by Ted Russell ( Navigator) for Jack Leigh ( Rear-Gunner) during WWll in 1944

 

Tonight I go out, come back I may

For that is a problem, on which nobody can say,

If that is my fate, then that’s OKAY

Although I should like to live, yet another day.

Halfway to heaven, up in the sky

Or as near to the other, if I'm going to fry,

At least we have an original shroud

The dying sun whitens the lowering cloud.

The engines blend in constant sound

Far below, the darkening ground,

A yellow moon, no more daylight

A false sense of security to fright

I wonder what they are doing at home

Probably like me, she is alone.

This REAR TURRET, so remote and small

Contains a man, not so tall

Controlling four guns at his will

His deadly purpose is to kill

Approaching the target, a reddish glare

An aircraft in front, drops its flare

And now the flak comes up in streams

Surely a hideous fancy of my dreams

But No' No', I am awake

A difficult objective, no piece of cake

My nerves are tense, I strain my eyes

At any moment, Death may strike from these dark skies.

A shadowy blur, My word one of these huns

I give him a burst from all of my guns

He disappears' into the gloom,

Who knows! Perhaps to his doom.

Our bombs go down with adept skill,

A few holes in the morning Jerry can fill

Now, lets get out of this wilderness

To a glass of beer in the nice warm mess.

It seems I am going to keep our date

Find you rigid, for being late

Now let me see that’s my number five

I can shoot a few lines on being alive.

The light grey sky, the sleeping towns

The very English wavy downs

Shrouded in early morning mist our 'drome

Who care's, not I, we are at home.