Treasure Island

Ernestine Northover

(25th March 1943)

High Flyer


They were 'Proctors' and 'Jackaroos' in those days.
Single wing aeroplanes,
two and four seaters,
either open engines, or open under your seat.

Exciting for a seventeen year old.

I went up with the commercial pilots,
logging up their flying hours.

Take off! Climb! Spin on one wing!
Roll! - 'keep looking forward! ',
Stall! - That was the most terrifying thing of all,
not knowing whether the engine would start firing up again.
There were no parachutes, of course.

Flying along the south coast of England,
around the Isle of Wight,
looking down on a 'patchwork' of fields, farms,
towns and villages,
all viewed in 'miniature'.

Those were the days when one felt immortal,
and there was something very romantic
about pilots who flew beyond the clouds.

That death defying, daredevil image.

Somehow, you didn't seem to suffer from nerves
when you were only seventeen, you just had an appetite
to sample the great, unknown, blue yonder.

Now I prefer to have my feet planted firmly on terra firma.

But Oh! those times when I was once a 'High Flyer'.
What memories!

Chocks away.............! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

© Ernestine Northover

Submitted: Monday, January 02, 2006
Edited: Sunday, January 06, 2008

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  • Duncan Wyllie (4/1/2006 12:14:00 PM)

    When I was 17, my boss treated me to a flight in a glider and we flew over keevil.We were towed up and when the cord was released it was such an amazing feeling.Now the idea of flying makes me very nervous.I think I should stop looking at the logic that restrains and start looking at the dreams that release.A wonderful poem Ernestine and a wonderful reminder.Love Duncan (Report) Reply

  • Mary Nagy (1/11/2006 11:27:00 AM)

    Ernestine..........this sounds wonderful! I was holding my breath during the rolls there with ya! I can't imagine how exciting that must've been. This is a great poem. You really put us there with you. Sincerely, Mary (Report) Reply

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