1. A progress meeting had been called that day,
At which I had a part to play.
I present my notes for your attention,
So read on chaps, you've all a mention!
2. Gordon Hodson said to me,
And to the man from the Ministry:
My KB000K0002 needs no correction,
We're all heading in the right direction!
3. Stanley Stapleton then joined in
And was heard to say above the din:
"For a plane that's nice to fly
The tailplane's still too bloody high!"
4. Robin Balmer looked aghast
And muttered in his coffee, "Blast!"
I was about to comment so,
So now I'll say: "The wing's too low."
5. John Allen, Chairman of the meeting,
Dropped the biscuit he was eating;
Scribbling minutes for that day
Wrote: "Tailplane region; somewhat grey."
6. Speaking loudly round the door
Assistant Head of Research, Bore:
"I always said my wing was best,
I'm glad to hear you've all confessed!"
7. At this Ron Williams shouted: "No!
The aircraft was not always so.
My project aircraft wing was high.
That would have been the best to fly!"
8. Then Dave Edwards had his say
About the price we'd have to pay.
But if we take him at his word
To build the plane would be absurd.
9. Into the room came Michael Dyke,
Known to some as an awkward tyke.
The silence was his chance to grab,
So he proposed yaw autostab.
10. Barry Pegram rushed in through the door,
Dropping maps of Dorking on the floor.
"Manchester have just this minute phoned,
They've smashed the model up", he moaned.
11. "Oh no!" cried Gordon full of tears,
"That will cost the programme years.
I did not reckon on this failure mode
Just when we are on the right road.
12. Then up spoke chubby Colin Raisey,
Wide awake; fresh as a daisy.
"If the plane's got too much weight to fly,
" Who cares if the model's gone awry?"
13. Then Ralph Hooper came into the room;
We all thought it meant the kiss of doom;
But all he said was, "Now look here,
To me the upper fin looks queer!"
14. Chris Hansford started to agree,
He had not spoken yet, you see.
"Belt up!" said Rochfort with a sigh,
It's my turn, to discuss SI."
15. And so the meeting carries on,
'Till a second tea-break's come and gone.
When John Allen's pen runs out,
Then will the meeting end, no doubt.
16. As 1970 draws to a close, can we with confidence suppose,
That in a few years' time, perhaps, in spite of tailplane, wings and flaps,
The "Project" plane will leave the ground and climb and dive and fly around,
Then sell to countries far and wide, so all of us can say with pride:
"I worked on that"?
Well Ken, not only a bard but an accurate prophet as well. Thank you!