A/N:these poems were written a couple of years ago and posted on another forum. The series, written by Captain W. E. Johns, was a childhood favourite. I own none of the characters or tales, and write for fun, not profit.
First chapter...Captain James Bigglesworth...
Here is a Leader
No classic, conventional, storybook hero;
A slight, unassuming and highly strung youth;.
Who moved from the schoolroom to aerial combat
A year under age, "reinventing" the truth.
All boyhood illusions of honour and glory
Soon shattered by battle in bullet-traced skies.
A witness to horrors beyond comprehension;
A world weary pilot with unquiet eyes.
Not flawless, not faultless, but fallibly human;
At times prone to recklessness, heart ruling head;
Acutely aware of the days every airman
Clung on to this world by the slenderest thread.
And yet…an instinctive, innate moral compass
Held steady despite all the chaos of war;
The trust that through loss and regret and betrayal
Some values would always be worth fighting for.
A keen sense of justice, a sure set of standards;
The wit to consider his foe's point of view;
Not slow to admit to omissions and errors
Or bending his rule book to see a task through.
No friend is abandoned, no mission rejected,
No offbeat solution is left unexplored;
Impatient to be in the thick of the action,
Where wrongs can be righted, and balance restored.
He never quite reaches the end of endurance;
Persisting, it seems, by his sheer strength of will.
If the cause or the case or the need is sufficient
He'll somehow hang on beyond reason until
The deed is completed, the evil plot thwarted,
The villains defeated, friends out of harm's way.
A stalwart and loyal and tireless companion
Who sets the whole tone: deadpan humour, fair play.
So, here is a leader who others will follow,
Undaunted by prospects of danger and death;
Inspired by the depths of regard and devotion
Which quietly endure to the very last breath.