The faculty all knew William by face–
soft pale visage dappled with dots,
jet mop atop fading to ash.
The sweetest boy branded with smiles,
he spent his afternoons near ducks
at the pond named after him,
outlining novels, chasing dreams
of fame with wizards and vampires
in romantic dystopias.
Alone always except for when
he dated the valedictorian–
four years they lasted, but she left.
A master of English, Math, History,
the freshman sought the sage–
the walking Wikipedia–
for wisdom on professors, parking, food.
Nobody ever saw him off-campus
except at the wake. Even mascots paid
their respects to the scholar of the bell
tower, still full of textbooks and degrees.

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