Quotes and Poems

"Great leaders never tell people how to do their jobs. Great leaders tell people what to do and   establish a framework within which it must be done. Then they let people on the front lines, who know best, figure out how to get it done."

~ General H. Norman Schwarzkopf

"No arsenal is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today's world do not have. It is a weapon that we as Americans do have. Let that be understood by those who practice terrorism."

- President Ronald Reagan

"Whatever the dangers of the action that we take, the dangers of inaction are far, far greater" - Tony Blair "There are no constraints on the human mind, no walls around the human spirit no barriers to our progress except those we ourselves erect." - Ronald Reagan

An Irish Airman Forsees His Death

I KNOW that I shall meet my fate
Somewhere among the clouds above;
Those that I fight I do not hate,
Those that I guard I do not love;

My county is Kiltartan Cross,
My countrymen Kiltartan's poor,
No likely end could bring them loss
Or leave them happier than before.

Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,
Nor public men, nor cheering crowds,
A lonely impulse of delight
Drove to this tumult in the clouds;

I balanced all, brought all to mind,
The years to come seemed waste of breath,
A waste of breath the years behind
In balance with this life, this death.

Yeats

"You will make all kinds of mistakes; but as long as you are generous and true, and also fierce, you cannot hurt the world or even seriously distress her. She is made to be wooed and won by youth." - Winston Churchill "No weapon in the arsenals of the world is as powerful as the will and courage of a free people...We will always remember. We will always be proud. We will always be prepared, so we may always be free...History teaches us that wars begin when governments believe the price of aggression is cheap."
- Ronald W. Reagan, 40th President of the United States
"The Heavens were the grandstands, and only the Gods were spectators. The stake was the World. The forfeit was the Player's place at the table; and the Game had no recess. It was the most dangerous of all sports-- and the most fascinating. It got in the blood like wine. It aged men 40 years in 40 days; it ruined nervous systems in an hour. It was a fast game-- the average life-span of a pilot at the Front was 48 hours. And, to many, it seemed an Age."
- Elliot White Springs, WWI ace
"Nothing in the world can take the
place of persistence. Talent will not;
nothing is more common than unsuccessful
men with talent. Genius will not;
unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full
of educated derilicts.
Persistence and determination alone
are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On'
has solved and always will solve the
problems of the human race."
- Calvin Coolidge

 

"If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door"
- Milton Berle
"Accept the challenges so that you may feel the exhilaration of victory."
- General George S. Patton
Ephesians 6:12, NIV. "Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." "Let us pray that peace be now restored to the world, and God will preserve it always." - MacArthur, 1945

 
The Bombers

Whenever I see them ride on high
Gleaming and proud in the morning sky
Or lying awake in bed at night
I hear them pass on their outward flight
I feel the mass of metal and guns
Delicate instruments, deadweight tons
Awkward, slow, bomb racks full
Straining away from downward pull
Straining away from home and base
And try to see the pilot's face
I imagine a boy who's just left school
On whose quick-learned skill and courage cool
Depend the lives of the men in his crew
And success of the job they have to do.
And something happens to me inside
That is deeper than grief, greater than pride
And though there is nothing I can say
I always look up as they go their way
And care and pray for every one,
And steel my heart to say,
"Thy will be done."

Sarah Churchill, daughter of Sir Winston.

===============================

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 windswept 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.

"High Flight" written by John Gillespie Magee Jr., who was killed in the Battle of Britain at age 19.
===========================================

Sweeping Squadrons
filled the summer sky
white trails across the
brilliant blue
We met them head on
five miles high
They were many, we were few
Went the day well?
We died and never knew
but well or ill - freedom -
we died for you
And left the vivid air
signed with our honour
And now -
Do you remember us
they called The Few?
We need to know that we
are not alone
That here and now our
sacrifice is known
And we are not forgotten

ANON - an inscription found by the
graveside of an unknown pilot -
Killed in Action.

===================

What is a Soul Mate?

If you have found a smile
that is the sweetest one you've known,

If you have heard, within a voice,
the echoes of your own,

If you have felt a touch
that stirs the longings of your heart,
And still can feel that closeness
in the moments you're apart,

If you have filled with wonder
at the way two lives can blend
To weave a perfect pattern
that is seamless, end to end,

If you believe some things in life
are simply meant to be,
Then you have found your soul mate,
your heart's own destiny.

Emily Matthews

************************

I am now the most
miserable man living.
If what I feel
were equally distributed
to the whole human family,
there would be not one
cheerful face on earth.
Whether I shall ever be better,
I cannot tell.
I awfully forebode I shall not.
To remain as I am is impossible.
I must die or be better
it appears to me.
ABRAHAM LINCOLN
"They shall grow not old,
as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them,
nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun
and in the morning
We will remember them."

-Poems for the Fallen by
Laurence Binyon
The blue in our victory ribbons may fade, Trophies become tarnished, The gleam of our medals lose luster, But the emotional experiences of joy and elation, heartache and disappointment Can never be shared by others.
- Fitz Crisler



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