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We were ring-around-the-rosy children
They were circles around the sun
Never give up, never slow down
Never grow old, never ever die young

Synchronized with the rising moon
Even with the evening star
They were true love written in stone
They were never alone, they were never that far apart

And we who couldn't bear to believe they might make it
We got to close our eyes
Cut up our losses into doable doses
Ration our tears and sighs

You could see them on the street on a saturday night
Everyone used to run them down
They're a little too sweet, they're a little too tight
Not enough tough for this town

We couldn't touch them with a ten-foot pole
No, it didn't seem to rattle at all
They were glued together body and soul
That much more with their backs up against the wall

Oh, hold them up, hold them up
Never do let them fall
Prey to the dust and the rust and the ruin
That names us and claims us and shames us all

I guess it had to happen someday soon
Wasn't nothing to hold them down
They would rise from among us like a big baloon
Take the sky, forsake the ground

Oh, yes, other hearts were broken
Yeah, other dreams ran dry
But our golden ones sail on, sail on
To another land beneath another sky



Lyrics taken from http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/j/james_taylor/never_die_young.html

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    Jayne LarsonApr 2, 2013 at 9:35 pm
    Scott, I didn't know this song until today. I read and reread the lyrics, read what others thought they meant, read an interview with James Taylor where he gave his perception of their meaning, and how they meant something entirely different to a fan. All interpretations applied, a sign of good lyrics for sure! Nice song.
  • u
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    UnregisteredMar 14, 2012 at 11:25 am
    This is a couple that have found in each other the merging of two separate souls, and have become one. They live on earth in that brief crux between sexual passion -- physical, earthly unity, and spiritual unity. They are like angels. To those around them, who live the struggling, grasping lives of the earthly, this couple is a reproach, a source of jealousy.

    They are so unearthly, it seems inevitable that they ascend, they leave. They've perfected what this life can be and don't need to go through it from beginning to end. They die. They die young. At the end, taylor comes back to his images of children playing, from "ring around the rosy," to this couple rising "from among us, like a big balloon. " no longer "they," a single entity forsakes the ground. "from among us" is a biblical phrase. They've taken on godlike qualities. How did they die? I imagine something swift, perhaps even a car accident, where they died together. And taylor, and everyone who got to see them in the brief time they were here, remembers them and conceives of them now as immortal, living a transcendent life in another world.
  • u
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    UnregisteredFeb 10, 2012 at 5:24 pm
    It's about dreams! The end of the song makes it clear: some of our dreams will never be fulfilled, but "our golden ones sail on, sail on... "

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