A Sparker’s “If”
(with apologies to Rudyard Kipling)
If you can keep your head when all the buntings
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can read through atmospheric crashes .
With signals fading down to near “R-2”;
If you can send and not get tired sending
And when you stumble, make a neat erase;
If you can read without the old complaining:
“His bloody Morse is just a damn disgrace”;
If you don’t fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds worth of IMI’s
And if you always use correct procedure,
But still don’t talk too much, nor look too wise;
If you can live with buntings, jeeps and stokers
And tolerate both Pusser’s rum and stew;
And copy when reliefs are in their hammocks
And never miss a group with every spew;
If officers and Chiefs and drunken Yeomen
Can heckle you and still your nerves won’t fray;
Then you’re a damn good sparker, son – you’ve made it!
You’re earning every penny of your pay. . . .