Requiem to a Rebel Forever Young

Remembering James Dean on the 50th anniversary of his death

East of Eden, north of Indy
James Dean headed west.
But it wasn’t long
before his dreams came up short
and things went south.

His fast-paced lifestyle
stole his smile (and his tomorrows)
as the reckless speed at which he lived
became the reckless speed
from which he died.

For this baby-faced
rebel without a cause,
a fleeting taste of adulthood
was swallowed up in death.

Fairmount’s fair-haired native son
had won the fame for which he’d longed
only to lose the chance to enjoy it.

No wonder America wept
as this bright falling star
(who burned out prematurely)
was swept from celebrity’s stage.

And although Central Indiana
is left with the right
to claim the final resting place,
it’s a somber privilege at best.

Even though James grew up a Quaker,
he seemed at odds with his Maker
when he cashed it all in
as he crashed.

It’s likely James Dean once knew
what it meant to be Friends with God,
but God only knows
if (through faith) they embraced
the day that he died…
forever young.