Dedication: To Jake and Patrick
He is dead, suddenly, nearly twenty-one,
the same age as his friend, my grieving son.
Though I hardly knew him, sadness scrapes my heart,
this off-kilter order, end too near the start.
I recall esprit de corps on the soccer team,
their future at that age a film script dream,
left-wing and right-wing mirrors, hard-working roles,
gunning their engines through defensive holes.
As his calendar turns, if granted such grace,
my son should covet extra-time’s running space,
breeze flirting with hair, smell of sweat, crushed grass,
strive to delight teammates with the perfect pass,
for we each want to realise beautiful goals,
link arms, boldly sing, before the bell tolls.