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An Ode To Dothan

July 23, 2004 09:10 AM

by Stephen D. Aloia

Oh, Dothan, sweet Dothan - You Southern city fair,
We give thee thanks, Oh Gracious Host, for times extraordinaire.
USTA has chosen you and wisely I am told
For all your class and Southern charm ­ You¹re a peanut made of gold.

Our kids came here to ply their trade with rackets, balls and skill,
You greeted them with welcome arms and gave them all a thrill.
With food so fine and courts Divine, you made them feel at ease
And by God¹s grace we had some rain and a timely Southern breeze.

Adventure Land was more than just amusement and delight
It helped our kids to meet new friends and see them in new light.
And all of this was set against the backdrop of a town
That will remain within their hearts ­ A memory renown.

With kids from all across our land from every clime and place
Who thought that all they came to do was win a tennis race.
Your warmth and generosity provided them with more
It showed them that there¹s more to life than a simple tennis score.

At just fourteen, with talents far beyond their gentle age
Beguiled are we to think that they are likewise like a sage.
Because they play with skills refined we fail to realize
The world to them is still so new and seen through children¹s eyes.

They need to see that life is more than a game, a set, and match,
They need to know that flowers grow and baby chickens hatch.
They need to see community as people pitching in,
They need to see great civic pride ­ The good folks of Dothan.

These virtues found in your good town reflect a life so rare.
It shines in Kim and Carol too, and Don and others there
Not just their words but things they did to make our visit great
That¹s why this trip will always be a memory top-rate.

And now I¹ll end this poem about that which could have been,
Just another tennis match in a city round the bend.
But Dothan¹s not just any town, it¹s far beyond all that,
Its people, pride, a way of life ­ To that I¹ll tip my hat!

With Southern hospitality, and Dothan as our host
This trip has been remarkable, of that you know we¹ll boast.
So thanks to all you citizens, the Mayor and news crew.
God Bless you all, Miss Bama too, with that I¹ll bid Adieu.




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