There is always a required and bittersweet rhetoric of death in moments like these, especially when it involves a once-star athlete dying young.

The time you won the champions’ game
Gainesville sang and cheered your name
Prof and prez let out a cry
And home they brought you shoulder-high.

That school so hard recruited you!
Yet now it’s silent. (Aaron who?)
Hero of a college town
Now a god without a crown.

Smart lad, who slips away
From fields where glory does not stay;
Or fields that never glory knew —
For all who saw the truth of you.

Eyes the shady night has shut
Cannot see the record cut,
And silence sounds no worse than jeers
After earth has stopped the ears.

Now round that early-laurelled head
Gather fans who sometime said
He’s made us proud to be UF!
… Why don’t we feel too much bereft?

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One Response to “To An Athlete Dying Young”

  1. adam Says:

    Too much bereft would be a stretch.
    We know that life is just a sketch.
    We’ll find another athlete lad
    And none will care if he is bad.

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