Failing and Flying
Everyone forgets that Icarus also flew.
It's the same when love comes to an end,
or the marriage fails and people say
they knew it was a mistake, that everybody
said it would never work. That she was
old enough to know better. But anything
worth doing is worth doing badly.
Like being there by that summer ocean
on the other side of the island while
love was fading out of her, the stars
burning so extravagantly those nights that
anyone could tell you they would never last.
Every morning she was asleep in my bed
like a visitation, the gentleness in her
like antelope standing in the dawn mist.
Each afternoon I watched her coming back
through the hot stony field after swimming,
the sea light behind her and the huge sky
on the other side of that. Listened to her
while we ate lunch. How can they say
the marriage failed? Like the people who
came back from Provence (when it was Provence)
and said it was pretty but the food was greasy.
I believe Icarus was not failing as he fell,
but just coming to the end of his triumph.
Jack Gilbert's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Failing and Flying by Jack Gilbert )
- Haiku- A coffin, DEEPAK KUMAR PATTANAYAK
- ANGEL MY NIECE, Suzanna Christina Chevalier
- Magnetizer, Saiom Shriver
- ANDY AT STUDIO 205, Suzanna Christina Chevalier
- Lizzie Borden (Limerick), Dorian Petersen Potter
- ANDERSON'S HOME, Suzanna Christina Chevalier
- ALLS PEOPLE DAY, Suzanna Christina Chevalier
- ALIAS POEM, Suzanna Christina Chevalier
- AIRPORT INSPECTION, Suzanna Christina Chevalier
- Where Once Upon A Morn So Dreary, Noah Body
Poem of the Day
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
- Heather Burns
(22 March 1941 -)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827)