May yet redeem our clay
When we and war together
One wise day
Have passed away.
If you’ve been paying attention* then you’ll know that as well as my ongoing medieval saga The Raven’s Wing and my regular gig over on Daily Picspiration I am putting together a biography of Rollie Buckolz, an American airman who hitch-hiked five hundred miles to join the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1940, way before the USA joined the second world war, so that he could come over here and fight for freedom. Although I suspect he was beguiled more by a sense of adventure than by any feelings of duty.
Rollie is buried a long way from his South Dakota home, in the churchyard of St. Nicholas Church in North Cotes, Lincolnshire, where his squadron was based in World War II. Yesterday I drove across the country to visit him.
*although there’s absolutely no reason why you should have been, let’s face it.