Monday, April 2, 2012

High Flight


Coming back from Hawaii a week ago Saturday, I took the window seat for an hour or so, and I found myself riveted to the view beyond the small square of  glass. For as far as I could see there was nothing but the blue Pacific, the cottony clouds, and that sky.

Whenever I see an expanse of endless sky, this poem comes to mind.  It was written by 19 year old RAF Spitfire pilot John Gillespie Magee, Jr  in 1941, just a few months before he was killed in a mid air collision.

High Flight

 Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth,

And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;

Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth

Of sun-split clouds, --and done a hundred things

You have not dreamed of --Wheeled and soared and swung

High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there

I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung

My eager craft through footless halls of air...

Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue

I've topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace

Where never lark or even eagle flew --

And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod

The high untrespassed sanctity of space,

Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.


Here’s wishing all of you a wonderful and inspiring week!


  1. Nice. It must've been a peaceful flight.

  2. Thanks Lisa. It was pretty peaceful. And it makes a person realize how vast the ocean is:)

  3. Beautiful thoughts in this verse. How sad that the author was later killed, doing what he so apparently loved.

  4. So true, Joanne! He had such a gift for writing, didn't he. I've always loved this poem so much:)

  5. Wow, I have been away because I didn't realize you'd gone to your beloved Hawaii! I'll have to backtrack.

  6. Kim, the trip is just a memory now. On to the next visit-soon I hope:)

  7. That was stunning. Really stunning.

    I got the chills at the news of his death so soon after the poem was written.

    As a writer it makes me want to get back to work, and make sure I send my message out into the world.