Adele Kenny invokes the classic myth to tell us something about childhood and fear…
Something Like Icarus
Imagine Icarus before the air let go / before the sea lunged
up. Imagine the / downward pitch, the boy wing-tipped /
and sticky. / Of course he failed, we all / fail.
And what moves now in the attic bedroom, the cellar three
floors down? What step in the hallway above? How much
stays as we left it in this old house where night still climbs
the front stairs, and something inside tries to shine?
I walk through rooms smaller than memory made them (the
old clock on its shelf—rows of books, their titles still
warm). Upstairs, a child stands at her bedroom window. I
know this child. Any sound in the dark, and she was
afraid—even before she learned what changes things.
In this old town with its brown river and empty places,
dusk raises the wind. No one here remembers who we were
or how we left. The little girl turns her head and whispers:
Daddy, I came so close …
Read more of Adele Kenny’s poetry.
Acknowledgment: A Lightness, A Thirst, or Nothing At All, Welcome Rain Publishers, 2015
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Photo by giorgio raffaelli /Flickr