High School Football season ends officially
In towns about noon on Thanksgiving Day,
Not on Ringing Hill or down Sanatoga way .
The grunt's game began at 2 PM traditionally .
In the 1950's about 1 o'clock Turkey Day
Fellows began arriving out behind *LPE School :
Young and old, in shape or not, wise or fool,
Rag tag or football wise, kick off to come soon .
Ringing Hill :Jack, Bill Bechtel ;Sanatoga :the Burns's,
Eddie Albert, Jack Babel, Tassy, and the Schott's
Ringing Hill : the Spohn's, Lin Bieler, the Mitch's,
And me . I played in this game for many years .
Fifty years later, memory slipping, who'd I forget ?
The Koren's for Ringing Hill ;Earnie, George for them.
Age presses up against the reality of fleeting
Time to rob the picture of faces, bodies, and play.
Rules, who worried for rules, kick off the damn ball. No one wore pads, some wore a hat if it was windy, But it wasn't until the shoes or sneakers came off That a true earnestness surfaced, in barefoot, speed accelerated .
Since August some of us had practiced in full gear,
Played a full schedule of High School Football games,
Prided ourselves in wins and discounted our losses
With less fanfare, then was anticipation for this "real" game.
Up and down the wind blown field from sideline to sideline
Men and boys played at blocking and tackling,
Running and throwing, in an earnest effort, or, just to have some fun.
The yearly game of random intent came to forgotten conclusions.
Gone, but for memories, some still living others long dead.
The Prize, bragging rights for a short while, the true worth,
As always, individuals banding together at some sort of play
Where the journey far outweighed the outcome of the contest.
Ronald C. Downie
*LPE- Lower Pottsgrove Elementary School on Pleasantview Road, Sanatoga,
Dedicated to many friends, lifelong closest, Jack Bechtel and Linwood Bieler.