When I was six, the great sensation That thrilled the people of the nation Was Lindbergh’s flight across the ocean, Achieved through that youth’s cocky notion That, all alone, he’d span the sea. Before him, crews of two or three Had failed to reach the sought-for goal. He had the true lone eagle’s soul. The speed those old craft could attain Meant thirty hours in the plane. No automatic pilots then; The flying must be done by men. He did it with no radio. To keep the fuel from running low, An extra tank, with him behind; No view ahead, he flew quite blind. He took enormous risks in stride, While soaring toward the other side. (The moon shot, forty years since then, Cost billions and a thousand men, All experts in technology. One can’t compare the two, you see.) For his return a planned parade With ticker tape was being made. In high silk hats were Mayor Walker, The fashion plate and witty talker, And Whalen with his white carnation, Officials brimming with elation, Awaiting with their nerves on edge Arrival of the main cortege. With highways not yet built by Moses, The hero’s fleet, bedecked with roses, Rolled toward Jamaica Avenue, Where crowds had gathered, all to view Him pass. My family’d gone there too— Without me since I had been bad. “You’ll stay at home!“ pronounced my dad. And so I lolled with thoughts unfertile, Along the avenue named Myrtle. And, as I stood there all alone, Lindy came, as on a throne— Aboard a limo led by cops, He roared right past all traffic stops. To speed his ride to the parade, Officials had this detour made. And, as he passed, my day was saved, He glanced at me, then smiled and waved. And when my folks came home, frustrated, “I just met Lindy!“ I related.
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