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by Warren Nadvornick
How strange it is to see him lying there,
eyes skyward, still unclouded by the mist
of death, as even death had not dismissed
this young, ferocious master of the air.
He ruled the blinding blue arena where
our brothers faced him: where none could resist
those bludgeons by this swift and bloody fist
of the brute empire thrashing from its lair.
Now lift him up, and standing in a row
salute him, glove and gun—we give this rite
to you, far from your land, our gallant foe,
to ease your passing to the endless night.
You held our honor in your heart, and so
we hold you through your low and final flight.