A British Poem on Gremlins

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gremlin on the wing

Editor’s Note: The earliest reference we’ve found to this poem appears in 2001. Readers will note that the diction sounds more American than British… But perhaps we have a WW2 piece here?

Say, you’ve gotta beware when you’re up in the air

And sailing serenely along.

‘Cos I often appear with a horrible leer

And make you do everything wrong.

I run up the wing, you can hear a sharp ‘ting’

As I pull at the wires in the plane,

Then I sit on the prop and the kite starts to drop,

It drives all the pilots insane.

When you’re trying to think, with a devilish wink

I proceed to bit lumps off the rudder.

You go down in a spin and I laugh and I grin,

It’s enough to make anyone shudder.

So you’ve gotta beware when you’re up in the air,

You might see me appear on the spanner.

I’m a wicked old ____; I know it as well

I’m a Gremlin, a ___ old sinner! (Stern ‘Puget Sound’ 151)

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