Reaching For Dreams
This essay describes the inspiring poem “I, Icarus” by Alden Nowlan, which requires very close reading. Throughout the poem, it seems there is one dominant idea; reaching for dreams. Many stanzas and lines within this poem work together to depict this theme. Not only do the lines in the poem depict the theme, but different poetic devices correlate to the theme as well (freedom and reaching for dreams). Distinct phrases like “willed myself to fly” illustrate the person’s goal of escaping his present condition and reaching for higher goals. Imagistic and auditory devices such as euphony and imagery, as well as allusion for reference describe the theme in the poem.
The auditory device which is most emphatic in the poem is euphony. The last three lines in “I, Icarus” correspond to the use of euphony. As there must be a sweet set of pleasant sounds, “and sometimes there were voices singing” can represent it no better. There were also voices singing as the person rose into the air. In his perspective, the wind that surrounded him was the cause of the music of the flutes. The concluding stanzas of the poem portray a euphonious sound to the reader’s ears. It can be the cause of the reader imagining these sounds to be pleasant. In addition to the selected theme of the poem, these sounds represent the person’s place of desire; as he might have reached his final destination at last.
An essential poetic device used in “I, Icarus” is imagery. The use of imagery is portrayed though a variety of different words, stanzas and phrases. For example, words like fly, flutes and window enables readers to illustrate visual images within their minds. The music of flutes as the person rose into the air can represent death and an afterlife, or heaven. The description of the person’s home can help a reader to imagine the location in which he resided. The window in this most graceful poem can be metaphorically referred to as the gateway through which the man can...