Sunday, February 21, 2016

Little Icarus

My daughter used to gather goose feathers
and pretend to fly.
She was nine, I think.
Eight or nine.

"Those things are nasty," I'd say,
"take them back outside."

Little Icarus
flew too close
to her mother.

For Poetry Pantry at Poets United

23 comments:

Magaly Guerrero said...

The last stanza made me giggle. Truth feathered with myth can be so delightful. ;-)

Donna@LivingFromHappiness said...

Ah the reality that hits child's play....what we see compared to a child.....just loved this and it brought me a chuckle!

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I read the ending as a protective mother's hope her daughter will avoid some of the pitfalls she experienced. I love the daughter wanting to fly. Loved this poem. I miss my daughter being nine.

brudberg said...

I hope she didn't fall at least... there is such delight in kids, but I hope few grew up like Icarus... :-)

Em said...

It's not funny. It's scary. What you mean in the last stanza is not that she stays in close proximity to you; you mean that she is too much like you. It is your greatest fear at this stage in life: that your daughter will turn out like you, make the same mistakes you did, love myth and fantasy above reality, and get burned/melted/drowned/destroyed by her passions, desires, and dreams.

The longest line is the most telling: "used to" ... you've been successful at redirecting her, at reprogramming her brain.

"and pretend to fly" ... That's all any of us is doing, isn't it? Pretending that we're flying.

That ending is really brilliant; to even have thought of this idea testifies to all the worlds hiding inside your brain. What else are you going to do, you mad genius, but bury them as well as you can?

Sioux said...

What a brilliant connection (to Icarus) and what a great twist at the end.

Sylvia K said...

Ah, no one says/writes it better! Thanks, as always, for a great start for my day! And I hope your day is beautiful --in every way!!

Sanaa Rizvi said...

Excellent write MZ :)

Fireblossom said...

This is the sort of well-observed and snappy poem about home life you had several of in our first book. I love it.

Mary said...

Ah, I guess she still needs to feel that protective warmth of mother.... Nothing wrong with that, I don't think.

R.K. Garon said...

haha ...all smiles. Wonderful.
ZQ

colleen said...

But the phoenix will rise again!

Marion said...

Thankfully, most kids ignore us at that age! Awesome poem, MZ. xo

James Toma said...

the myth at the end explained it all. Very well-expressed.

Old Egg said...

The inventiveness of children often leaves parents amazed, sad and confused as they enter their own independent world without us. This is a beautiful post.

Myrna R. said...

This made me smile then made me wonder - will you burn her?, melt her wings? I'm sure not. Your warmth will guide her.

SuyashJ said...

now that was a surprise ending !

Sumana Roy said...

the name "Icarus" & the expression "too close" have an inherent danger in them...sigh .....

Jae Rose said...

I believe little Icarus will fly...find lovely big feathers and create beautiful wings and fly magically (and safely) ..like her mother :)

Rommy said...

That last stanza can mean so much, especially noting the past tense used in the first line. I'm reminded of a line from the Crow. I think it went something along the lines of "mother is the word for god on the lips of children". And I'm reminded how the sun is also considered a god or goddess in many cultures. Icarus abandoning her wings to win the favor of her goddess. I wonder if the goddess has any regrets about that.

grapeling said...

this is the best allusion to the myth, and mother-daughter relationships, I've ever read. ~

Phil Slade said...

Kids grow up too soon. That's for sure.

humbird said...

Nice age of 8 or 9, our dreams and real we...untill meet those Icarus...love brevity and surprize..