Flying Free πŸ¦…

Final year,
Of university,
Army training,
With OTC,

Sergeant Major,
Has an ideaβ€”
Who wants to come parachuting?
Definitely me!

Salisbury plain,
April 2009,
Static-line solo jump,
β€”That’s the plan;

A day of training,
It begins…
With a bit of teaching,
Explaining theory;

Next, harness training,
Suspended by bungees,
Hanging indignantly,
To practice steering;

Now listen up!
Reserve-chute procedure,
…Should you need it,
If things are looking dire;

Now, for landing,
Let’s practice flaring,
At twenty feet,
Don’t dare mess up!

Done with that,
Now watch this closely…
β€”This how we roll,
And avoid breaking bones;

Lastly, of all,
The pretend fuselage,
Standing at the hole,
Playing theatrical roles…

One-one-thousand,
Two-one-thousand,
Three-one-thousand,
Four-one-thousand
,
β€”Check canopy!
β€”Can I steer?
β€”Do I have control?

One-one-thousand,
Two-one-thousand…

Over and over again,
A fascinating day!

Come to evening,
Will we jump today?
We’d brought our tents,
Just in case,

But the weather’s looking fine,
This warm Spring evening,
Sky is clear,
Not a breeze in the air;

Suited up,
We’re all lined up,
Why do I have to pee?
I’ve just been, this is silly!

Nevermind, this is normal,
Into the plane,
It begins to rumble…

Sitting in the back,
No windows to look out,
With six girls behind,
And five guys ahead,

Boom,
The door is opened,
Catch sight of the view,
And my nerves are…
Quietened;

Oh my god,
I know I’m doing this,
I long to be immersed,
In that endless view;

One by one,
We shuffle along,
As each guy in turn,
Disappears through that hole,

Oh my god,
This is so exciting,
I can’t put it off now,
As for me…they’re waiting!

Remember,
There are six girls watching,

As I practiced…
Sit down at the ledge,
One hand behind,
And one ahead;

Oh, god,
The wind’s tearing at my legs!
I feel so exposed,
Yet exhilarated;

Hanging onto a plane,
Resisting the pull,
As we soaring over,
Old Salisbury Plain;

ARE YOU READY?
Smile-for-the-camera,
YES!

GO!!!

F**k-I’m-doing-it-just-committed-myself,
Fully-committed-hold-body-position,
One-one-thousand,
Two-one-thousand…

Check, canopy!
That’s funny,
It’s not quite ready,
Maybe I looked too early…

Look away, man,
…Maybe now?

Ok, thank f**k for that!

Have beautiful canopy,
I can steer,
I’m in control…
There’s no one around,

Let the fun begin!

Looking down,
Holy cow…
Just my feet in mid-air,
Then five-thousand feet,
And then the ground…
Wow;

Check altimeterβ€”

Looking fine,
Plenty to spare,
Let’s fly around,
Like a bird way up there;

Sun is low,
The air is warm,
All is calm…
Completely perfect;

Check altimeterβ€”

A few to go,
Let’s spiral turn,
As they showed us,
But don’t go wild!

Stomach dropping out,
Corkscrewing down,
Simply wow,
But look at that altimeterβ€”

Don’t want to waste,
All this precious height,
Absorb the sights,
Let’s do this right :D,

If I wasn’t screaming,
I’d be crying,
Just too exciting,
And beautiful at the same time,

Luxurious amounts of space around me,
In three dimensions,
Simulataneously;

Green and purple canopy,
Please start turning back to the field!

Oh waitβ€” that’s me,

Check altimeterβ€”

Ok, you have a point there,

Check landing arrowβ€”
But it doesn’t matter,
The wind is zero,
Pick a direction…

Check altimeterβ€”

400 feet,
Start the approach,
It’s looking fine,
I’ll easily make it,

But damn, this grass,
Looking so smooth,
It’s hard to judge,
Exactly my height;

Oh cool,
There’s Sergeant Major,

He’s got his camera,
And he gives me a measure;

He’s filming me,
For posterity,
As I come zooming in,
At a frightening speed;

12-20 feet, they’d said,
That’s when I should begin my flare,
But this is awfully fast,
Do I even dare?

Well I don’t want broken legs,
Just be patient,
Three Sergeants-Majorβ€”
Now pull down hard!

Swoosh,
Slowing right down,
Knees together,
Roll into the ground;

…Hairs are standing,
Everything’s stopped moving,
I get untangled,
And jump up whooping!

πŸŒͺ

15 thoughts on “Flying Free πŸ¦…

    1. Thank you so much for the compliments! :D. I had to take a big rest after this haha.

      Thanks so much for the nomination too. Honestly, I’m not a fan of those and I’m not participating in them. But I really appreciate the recognition for sure πŸ™‚ πŸ’™.

      Like

      1. I wasn’t a fan either. But this annoying thing became not so annoying after several years of asocial life. But this is my story 🀷
        Keep up the good work the way you feel the most comfortable πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Haha, cool, that’s interesting. Thanks for sharing your thoughts/experience related to that, I appreciate it!

      The main problem I have with it is in how it’s implemented–– the unending nature of it, and the fact that you nominate more than one person, means that they quickly saturate the available people who can be awarded.

      But I’ll never say never, and maybe I’ll see something that changes my opinion!

      Thanks πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!! I thought you’d like it. I now have a single favourite poem, lol.

      Thank you for reading all of it, it’s a bit epic! I’m really really happy with it though :).

      I can imagine! πŸ˜€

      I’m off now, to buy some food :). Thanks!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. πŸ˜„, I’m seriously going to discuss this more with you!

        Like

      2. Me too!!! Paragliding! I’ve always wanted to do it. I recently realised that my knees don’t have to be a limitation with paragliding πŸ˜„.

        I basically live for eventually being able to do that, because nothing would ever come close to that experience. For me, it’s the epitome of human desires. The unimaginable freedom to experience the natural world in three dimensions, all of that responsibility in your hands, wow. The absolute freedom, especially since I now have the knee problems.

        Like

      3. It is basically like transcendence. It gives me that feeling.

        Like

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