A prison camp in Germany,
Coordinates, a mystery.
A travellers' aid society,
A hidden place in history...
Whilst war is raging, part of them,
The heart of them, must not be shown.
Beneath the surface nonchalance,
And cocky stance and flippant tone,
And mocking grin, and East End wit,
And every bit of French cuisine;
Lie subterfuge and deft command,
And sleight of hand...unheard, unseen...
The boss, the hub, the cornerstone;
The backbone of this close knit team.
The vital spark, the catalyst;
Protagonist in every scheme.
The second thoughts, the lucky guess,
The constant stress, the nights awake,
The wings now clipped, the heavy price;
The sacrifice for duty's sake.
The solid rock, the right hand man;
More constant than the snow-filled skies.
The battles fought for many years,
The fears which haunt each enterprise.
Responding when his country called,
Though stalled by hate and prejudice.
His stripes, hard-earned; no easy win;
No oiled wheels spin for men like this.
The conman, tailor, cardsharp, thief;
The firm belief he counts for less
Than those he holds in high regard;
Life-scarred, scant hope of happiness.
He's learned that nothing good can last,
A bitter past, his share of Hell;
But some have watched the truth unfold;
There's gold beneath the tarnished shell.
The chef; three bands upon his sleeve;
He'll grieve as long as Paris burns.
His country fell, his freedom's lost.
Worth any cost, till peace returns;
All foe are faced, all odds defied.
With stubborn pride, he's standing tall.
The stove becomes his battlefield.
He will not yield, he must not fall.
The bright and optimistic soul;
His unique role, his gifts combined
Explosively, in every sense.
Though confidence is undermined
Each time he stumbles, hope survives.
He always strives to make amends,
But many simply fail to see
How skilfully he backs his friends.
The risks are high, will rise until
All guns are still, all work is done.
Their schemes and plans adapt, change shape;
There's no escape till war is won.
And such relentless dangers tether
Lives together; ties which bind
A diverse team, with skills and flaws;
A noble cause, the finest kind.
Their captive status redefined
As active service. Reassigned
To missions, covert and confined.
These volunteers, who leave behind
Their liberty and peace of mind...