My setting of the famous 1941 poem by RCAF pilot John Gillespie Magee Jr. I was inspired to compose it after the Columbia space shuttle disaster in 2003 as a tribute to the crews of both the Columbia and Challenger.
Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds - and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of - wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there,
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air.
Up, up the long delirious, burning blue
I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or even eagle flew.
And, while with silent, lifting mind I've trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.
Poem (c) 1941 - John Gillespie Magee, Jr.
Music (c) 2003 - Gary Dugan
all rights reserved