If your path has crossed dear Ali's
Then you will surely know
When he wants to make "it" happen
"It's" always good to go!
He has a way of working
That leaves you in no doubt
His plans will clearly come to pass
And find a gainful route!
But what is it that makes him reach
Across the sands of time
To touch so many hearts and lives
No longer in their prime?
What is the thing that drives him on
To join them overseas,
And gather friends from far and wide
To reunite with ease?
How does he motivate and lead
A team both old and young
Who hail from all the globe around
And toil for praise unsung?
What is this magic sense he has
That all shall come to pass?
A quiet confidence and strength,
A self-belief steadfast.
There are so many qualities
Of his that claim respect:
An active mind, perspective clear,
Ability to connect.
Much energy and wisdom rich,
Loyalty deep and true,
A love of family, national pride,
Company man right through.
But most of all we hold him dear
For his kind and gen'rous heart
That reaches out across the world
To draw friends long apart.
These Gath'rings nurtured by his hand
Are blessed by his great care,
And demonstrate to everyone
A fellowship most rare.
For Ali also understands
That in this changing world
Friendship is a powerful tool
A flag to keep unfurled.
So when we see our common ground
And think on life we've shared,
We all can raise a prayer of thanks -
Most of all that Ali cared.
by Alison Hooker