Thursday, April 9, 2015

Lament for Icarus

                    the nymphs, speaking to Daedalus

We found your son expiring in slow twirls,
fished him out with nets, unfurled
his body, limp, onto rock. Forget
that you told him “I can teach you to fly.”

Never mind that you encumbered him
with your pride, crafting his camouflage
hawk-wings to be weighted in splendor,

about to fall off even before
he cast himself into thin air.
It should have been winter.
He should have aligned himself

with hurricanes, to sweep across the channel,
instead, impressed by the red lip of the sun,
to fritter with a faint pop or two,
fall alone into a pool of silent light.

[from my chapbook Clouds as Inkblots for the War Prone
  remix poem, source text: Guard of Honor by James Gould Cozzens]

The Lament for Icarus (1898), Herbert James Draper, Wikimedia Commons

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