War Alphabet (MacEdward Leach)
(Air Force Alphabet)

Now, friends, if you will listen to me
for just one minute please,
I'll sing to you a little song
from letters A to Z;
If it chanced that they don't rhyme,
don't lay no blame on me,
Because it took me fourteen weeks
to get from A to Z.

A is for the Air Force boys
with hearts so brave and true,
B is for the battle,
and we're bound to win it through;
C is for our country,
and we're sure she will withstand,
D is for duty that
we pledge unto our land,

E, that stands for England, boys,
one nation brave and strong,
F is for the Führer
whose time now won't be long;
G that stands for Goering
who'll also meet his fate,
H is for the heat that waits them
in that fiery place.

I is for the iron and the steel
that we can sling,
J is for the justice, boys,
that it will surely bring;
K is for the khaki suits
our soldier lads must wear,
L is for the lovers who wait
their sweethearts over there.

M is for the many things
that we must do so without,
N is for the Navy boys
who guard the deep blue route;
O is for our officers
who stand first in command,
P is for the precious lads
that form the army band.

Q is for the questioning
that waits for every Hun,
R is for the roundup time
when it's too late to run;
S is for the satisfaction
we are sure to share,
T is for the time when
we will fly right over there.

U is for the Union Jack,
we're sure she'll never fall,
V, of course, for victory,
and it's for one and all;
W stands for wayward boys
who'll be soon homeward bound,
Xs stand for kisses
that we will pass around.

Y is for the yellow rats,
the laugh will be on them,
Z is for the Ziegfried line
that we won't need again;
Of all the letters in this song
the one that beats them all,
Is V for victory, the letter
that won't let our old flag fall.

####.... Author unknown. Traditional World War II ballad ....####

Collected in 1950 from Eddy Primroy [1928-1999] of Pouch Cove, NL, and published in MacEdward Leach And The Songs Of Atlantic Canada © 2004 Memorial University of Newfoundland Folklore and Language Archive (MUNFLA).

In 1960, MacEdward Leach [1897-1967] collected a similar variant in Labrador, which he noted was composed in the Canadian Air Force during the Second World War. That variant was published as #67, Air Force Alphabet on p.178 of Folk Ballads And Songs Of The Lower Labrador Coast by The National Museum of Canada, (Ottawa, 1965) Crown Copyrights Reserved. The Labrador version has a few different lines; for example, "F it stands for freedom, the time now won't be long" and "G it stands for glory where each shall meet his fate."


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