There’s a trillion trillion stars throughout the cosmos
And seven billion people on the earth
And just about each second another person dies
And just about as often a super nova bursts
Most folks tend to pass away in silence
Or maybe with a prayer for those they love
But a super nova’s light outshines a hundred billion stars
In a blazing fireball high above

A super nova starts out as a mighty star
At least eight times more massive than the sun
As its hydrogen is crushed beneath its gravity
A brilliant fusion furnace is begun
After eons when its hydrogen is finished
And it’s a hundred million degrees inside its core
The nuclei of helium fuse and turn to carbon
And the dying star gets hotter and still brighter than before

In six centuries the carbon turns to oxygen
And then to silicon in less than half a year
Which fuses into iron in just about a day
And that’s when the nova’s gamma rays appear
Like the final gasp of a once great star the gamma rays escape
Just before the blast begins to show
As a soul ascends to heaven so these rays fly into space
Heralding the nova’s brilliant glow

Each second someone dies and leaves his legacy
His children, and the lives that he has touched
And a super nova offers up its elements
To seed the universe with cosmic dust
The carbon in your tissues, and the iron in your blood
And the calcium that forms your very bone
Were all forged in the fires of a million super novas
From stardust we came and to stardust we’ll go