Flying/Spring of ’44

Music & Lyrics: M.L. Hammond

he had twelve days leave when I met him in Montreal
we courted a week then got married
he wore his uniform
I wore my grey silk suit and a hat with a veil
my mother shook her head and said
you hardly know the boy

but it was spring of ’44
it was such a crazy time
and he seemed so brave
so full of glory
with his talk of planes and the sky
I remember him saying –

“Oh flying—
well the Hurricane she’s a damn fine plane
and I wish you could see all the boys and me
doing loops and dives in tight formation
chasing the wind
like eagles in the sun”

it was spring again when I went to meet his train
they sent him home a hero
with medals and that look in his eyes
and a cane—
I hardly knew him
and most nights he’d wake up shaking and scared
but he’d never tell me
what he was seeing

but it was spring of ’45
it was such a hopeful time
when he was finally on the mend
we’d sit on the porch
and he’d watch the sky
like he was looking for something

oh flying
sun on the silver wing
it’s so silent out there
like a blue cathedral
you can climb and climb
till the earth falls away
and you’re finally alone now
you’ve finally come home

well the doctors told him he could never fly again
but a hero’s a hero
and the Air Force takes care of its own
oh they let him fly a desk for thirty years
and except for the drinking
nothing much has changed
you know he’s still got his medals
and his aches and his pains
he’s still got his bad dreams
ah he’s still the same stranger I met
at the train

but there was a boy in ’44
he always talked of flying
and one day his plane took off
and you know, they’ve never come down
he’s still somewhere flying

oh flying
sun on the silver wing …