Pilots Write Poetry

Proceeds from Beyond Haiku will go to the Allied Pilots Association Emergency Relief and Scholarship Fund, to provide support for pilots impacted by industry effects of COVID-19.


Beyond Haiku peeks through the cockpit door to reveal the poetic heart of airline pilots. Captain Linda Pauwels, instructor pilot on the Boeing 787 and former aviation columnist for the Orange County Register, presents a selection of haiku and short poems by men and women who fly airplanes for a living. The writing is niche and empathetic. The humor is characteristically wry, befitting the pilot persona. Beautiful illustrations, by children of pilots aged 6 to 17, bring this flight of fancy in for a smooth landing. Proceeds from Beyond Haiku will go to the Allied Pilots Association Emergency Relief and Scholarship Fund, to provide support for pilots furloughed due to the industry effects of COVID-19.


“In this collection you’ll find wit, grit, soul and heart. You’ll live fire and ice and the pain of leaving; the marshalling of strength and the lament of loss; shiny newness and numbing familiarity. And it’s not so much about flying as it is in itself flight, poetic flight.

Sit down, strap in, and enjoy the ride.”

– Chris Manno, PhD, Rhetoric and Literature; Adjunct Professor, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX. American Airlines Captain- retired.

Beyond Haiku by Captain Linda Pauwels is an amazing selection of original haiku and short poems written by pilots with artwork from their children. It is a quick insightful read containing 51 haikus, 20 short poems and seven pieces of philosophical prose.  Her book eloquently describes how pilots are a rare breed that live at the edge of so many continuums: speed, altitude, time, distance, danger, performance, proficiency and emotion. They have unique lives, experiences and perspectives that few of us will ever know. Haikus are an instantaneous snapshot revealing what a pilot was experiencing or thinking about. It’s a means to transcend their unique perspective to inspire yours. Captain Pauwels has done an outstanding job organizing and categorizing these snippets for your perusal. The collection is broad to cover the gambit of aviation allowing you to select a topic and deep dive into your own reflections! Pilots are away from their family for long durations so please pay special attention to their children’s artwork. Like haikus, their simplistic art style deeply expresses innocent heartfelt messages.”

– Helmut H. Reda, Editor, Because I Fly, the world’s largest collection of aviation poetry

“In Beyond Haiku: Pilots Write Poetry, American Airlines Captain Linda Pauwels showcases a collection of work penned by fellow pilots, both active and retired. The sections range from deeply reflective verses to short witty haiku, each contributor offering a glimpse into a pilot’s life. From the vivid image of a bird in flight to a father longing to see his kids, each poem takes you into the heart and minds of those good folks who’ve dedicated their careers to getting passengers safely from one place to another.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who’s ever traveled through the air, whether you’re up front at the controls or buckled into your seatbelt in back on your way from here to there.”

 – Kathleen M. Rodgers, Aviation poet and author of the new novel, The Flying Cutterbucks

Check out the Univision interview feature with Linda Pauwels:


Captain Linda Pauwels is an airline pilot. For over three decades she has flown thousands of hours, on many types of big airplanes, all over the world. Linda even counts some aviation “firsts” attached to her name. At present, she instructs and evaluates pilots as a check airman on the Boeing 787 for American Airlines.

Linda was born in San Pedro, Buenos Aires, Argentina. She came to the United States at age six, after the death of her father. Having experienced adversity early on in life, she grew to understand and appreciate the value of resilience. Linda integrates intuition and sensitivity, along with a graduate academic preparation in education, in her professional life.

In the mid-2000s, Linda wrote a regular column, titled From the Cockpit, for the Orange County Register. She has been secretly writing poetry for a while. Unfortunately, that cat is now out of the bag.

Linda has been married to Frederick, also a pilot, for almost forty years. They have two adult children, Nathalie and Patrick, domestic animals, and an Asian garden with a bird feeder. The family has a primary base in North Texas, near DFW airport, and a secondary base in South Florida, near MIA.


CA Michael Baltzer
CA Loren Banko
CA Carl Battis
CA Bill Behymer
CA Michael Boring
CKA Scott Christensen
CA Mark Cronin
CA John Drindak
CA Frank Floersh
CA Steen Friis-Hansen
FO Timothy Hamel
CA Thomas Hill
CKA Gregory Hudson
CA Ron Hunt
FO Richard Krutenat
CA Curtis Ladich
CA Gerardo Lami
FO Chris Lemon
CA Glenn Mackie
FO Dan Manusos
CA John McIlvenna
FO Roger Mortensen
CA Charlotte O'Connell
CA Michael Phelan
CA David Rintel
FO Carol Scherer
CA Michael Sigman
CA Rob Sproc
CA Don Steinman
CA Mark Treider
CA Konstantin Volodzko
FO Christopher Wachter
CKA Wendy Young and CKA Linda Pauwels
FO Patrick Zeller

AA Cadet Academy Pilots

Jordan Carty - AA Cadet
Nathalie Pauwels - AA Cadet
Kristin Sito - AA Cadet
Keith Taylor - AA Cadet

Young Artists

Ella Claire Basset, age 10
Kaylee Burkitt, age 8
Callista Chabot, age 17
Selah Coy, age 8
Sophia Downard, age 15
Jacob Govin, age 10
Joseph Govin, age 10
Kinley Johnson, age 12
Davis Kwasny, age 11
Monica Kwasny, age 9
Penelope Neilon, age 6
Scarlett O’Malley, age 12
Rebecca Peitz, age 15
Fiona Pfeiffer, age 10
Skye Stauffer, age 15
Char Young, age 13
Sam Young, age 13

Copyright. © 2020. Linda Pauwels