This poem was written to honor my husband, Lt. Donald L. Jacobs. Don was born in Cheyenne, Wyoming. When he was drafted he became a Navy pilot, training in Pensacola. He was assigned to Korea. However, the poem should also honor the many pilots who have flown, survived, lost their lives or became missing in action.

The movie “The Bridges at Toko-Ri” is very close to being accurate.

Any number of circumstances spell danger to those who fly, from mechanical failure, to being hit, to being lost. So many gallant and brave men and women have been lost during the numerous wars of the 20th century. It seems that peace is elusive. Those who fly in the face of danger display a spectacular amount of courage.

The poem is called:


In the blink of an eye

Earth becomes a dot

Fast approaching

Enemy territory

Quickly passing

A solitary lighthouse

Once a beacon for safe passage

Now a landmark into enemy land

Trees seem to have metallic twigs

Fear creeps in

Time and distance compressed

Flack and fire all around

Payload dropped

More flack and fire

Plane shivers

Searing pain

Leg and cheek hit

Plane still flying

Pain throbs in tune with plane

Through flack and fire, plane flies

Vast ocean grey expense appears

Leaving lighthouse behind

Like a giant whale

Aircraft carrier Kearsarge appears

Concentration kicks in

Safe landing a must

Forget pain

Quick descent

Tailhook grabs plane

Now on deck


Another mission

Swirling random thoughts

Political platitudes

Senseless wars

Death and destruction

No good first lines to stop war