Thursday 30 September 2010

RAF Poem, Regent Palace History

The Regent Palace hotel played an important role in the lives of the soldiers sailors and airmen of the forces who fought in both wars, but probably more significantly in WW 2 I was reminded recently because if the 70th aniversary celebrations of the Battle of Britain of the poem written on Regent Palace Hotel note paper by Fl/Lt. Jack Skingley DFC the complete version I have shown below. The original handwritten poem is kept by his daughter we can only surmise as to the mood and circumstances surrounding its composition. They were very brave men and we can only never imagine what they went through, although this poem shares some inner thoughts.

Thought to part of a speech as it ends in a toast to Our Heroes

Our Heroes
by Fl/Lt. Jack Skingley DFC
missing July 1944 (written around this time)

Yonder star alive with merry light
Appears from Earth to be inanimate,
Yet think you not that in that distant sphere,
Live people much the same as here.

Do they know pain as we who suffer now,
Are their aims small as ours, which show
No wish to rise to greater heights
As Time strides on and the Recorder writes.

Look there!
The sun has thrust his rays,
To cap rock's majesty in growing blaze
While down below to mortal life it brings
A stealing glow - and things,
Which in the shadow of the eve
Gained magnitude, now die to leave
The thought that yester took but little joy from Life
When man can face the growing strife
Now prevalent in this troubled world
By honouring a Flag unfurl'd.

Those soldiers who paraded in the Past
Fought war and left Death's aftermath,
Their ghosts now stand with Youth to guide their feet,
To make it easier when the drummers beat
And Last Post sends its poignant prayer
Oh God, receive these Heroes in Thy Care

Oh God, I pray that it may be
That when our nation's history
Stands recorded in Truth's clear light
No blot appears to mar the sight
Of noble sacrifice by those who tried,
With Hope and Loyalty allied,
To stop a Monster's greed for power
And put an end to War for ever

Their loyalty unites in tempered band
True friendship proffered with unstinting hand.
If theirs to die the clasp is strong
The greater sacrifice, the better bond.

In vision clear as to their destiny
These men will fight for Right unceasingly,
So charge your cups
And stand in prideful pose
To drink a toast to Victory and to Those
Who counted not the price for Conquest paid
Unfaltered in their purpose firmly made,
To rid the World of horror and of vice,
They gave their lives, what Greater Sacrifice!

I give you 'Our Heroes'