Extinction: The Airman's Prayer

Original Text: 
Soldier Poetry of the Second World War: An Anthology, ed. Jane and Walter Morgan, Presented with the permission of the Department of National Defence, Government of Canada. Oakville: Mosaic Press, 1990: 45. RPO
2Short is the prayer I make to thee;
3I do not ask in battle hour
4For any shield to cover me.
5The vast unalterable way,
6From which the stars do not depart,
7May not be turned aside to stay
8The bullet flying through my heart.
9I ask no help to strike my foe;
10I seek no petty victory here;
11The enemy I hate, I know
12To thee is dear.
13But this I pray, be at my side,
14When death is drawing through the sky;
15Almighty Lord, who also died
16Teach me the way that I should die.


1] The title is recorded in a memorial of Black Friday (Feb. 5, 1945) at http://www.404squadron.com/Oct1944.html . Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
Publication Notes: 
The Maple Leaf 3.55 (May 29, 1945): 2.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: