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Icarus  

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DeepThought
(@leinweber)
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@a2m0n2 I think that part of the reason that Icarus is portrayed so sadly in the modern time is to give people an example of what not to do. Icarus is shown in a very sad and depressing light in the poem, as a washed up hero with nothing to look forward to in life. However, a reader could look on this Icarus character with pity. If we see an example of someone like Icarus part of my reaction reading the poem was that I do not want to end up in the same situation and mindset that Icarus is in in this poem. By showing Icarus as a sort of pitiful character the author could be giving a warning that if someone only focuses on the past, their life can become stagnant and miserable, as they are no longer looking forward to what they could be, only what they were.


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bunkymoo
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@mangoman I like how you brought up the two sides of the story; the myth vs. the poem written about his life after the incident. I found the take on the story to be very interesting, but I believe the purpose was not saying what the life is like of an average person, but the feelings of Icarus living the life of a normal person. But when I first read the poem, I was glad to see a plot twist, because it build off of an already great story.


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octavia
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@leinweber I found this interesting as well. I think with Greek mythology and myths in general, we see warnings and messages communicated to us, but seeing it set in a modern setting easily makes it more relatable and more effective. The plot twist emphasizes this relatability and makes the theme more interesting.


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ahayo
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@mangoman I like this observation, and with the poem that we read I find that yes this could for sure be a theme. I mean for one he is portrayed as an average person and doesn't seem to like his life, which adds to the theme of not enjoying his "normal life". This to me also shows the dedication of the character. They are not patient and don't like to have to work for things which is why they wish they were dead near the end of the poem.


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Anonymous Parrot
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@leinweber I certainly think what you said partially plays into the theme but I think it is also trying to show the contrast between Icarus's hope and the rest of the society. Industrialization had just kicked off and was a prominent focus in many of these modernist poems. Industrialization also gnawed away at what it meant to be human because things were seen in terms of mechanics. The more you work, the less you ask questions, the more "efficient" we are and the more profit I make. Society is painted as a drab background against Icarus's waning light. Perhaps it more of warning that we may need to turn our society around before all of our lights are put out. 


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stella
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@alechayosh07, I agree! What I found to be the most interesting about the poem was the setting. I thought that putting Icarus into a suburban setting really showed how he saw himself as a failure. In the original story of Icarus, he flies too close to the sun causing his wings to break, and he drowns in the ocean. In the modern retelling, we see him grow old, living a life of monotony and sadness. Even though he survives, I think the modern retelling is sadder. Although he died because of it, it's sad to see Icarus without his bravery and excitement for the world. 


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xmysterio
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@msar I agree with this and that everyone can relate to it in a sense. We’ve all been where Icarus finds himself to be in this poem. We’ve failed at doing something, and have gotten hard on ourselves because of it. Although in Icarus’s case, his is a bit more extreme. 


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xmysterio
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I really enjoyed this poem. I thought it was interesting to see Icarus, a mythical legend, transform into a nobody in a town where no one payed much attention to him. For Icarus, it was humbling. It was also relatable, as Icarus experienced something so beautiful as flying close to the sun. He felt that he would never be able to match up to that feeling, and I have found myself feeling that way in life many times. We often experience something wonderful, and feel like we can never recreate that feeling. I think this poem’s ability to connect with readers in that sense was what I liked so much about it.


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xwing37
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@alechayosh07, I too did not know what to expect. All I thought was that it was going to be about the myth of Icarus. But I thought the twist that the author put on it was super interesting and engaging. This was definitely one of my favorite poems that we have read this year just because I felt like I could connect to the "don't take things for granted" theme. I think the author implemented this twist on the myth of Icarus perfectly.


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bunkymoo
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@xwing37 I felt like I could connect to this poem as well. Having been written about a topic I was somewhat familiar with, made some of the meaning easier to understand. I didn't know the plot twist was going to happen, but I'm glad it did. This was also one of my favorite poems because of the fact that it was so relatable and easy to follow along. Also, the author loaded the poem with a lot of figurative languages that made the poem so much more engaging to the reader. 


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MangoMan
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@carlatortelli You make a good point, but I think for those people who live with more luxuries and are almost remote from a more average lifestyle (according to the middle class) that the theme becomes a third person point of view.  I think if you come from the middle or lower class you're looking at someone much more fortunate and think it isn't fair, and they should learn to live like you, but I think if you're coming from a higher class then you wouldn't even know where to begin.  I think that's where Icarus is coming from.


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stella
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@xmysterio, This is a really good point. When I read this poem, I wondered whether it would be better to live in a depressed state, knowing there is so much more out there or if it would be better to live a trivial life. I think this poem is a good example of ignorance being bliss. All of Icarus's neighbors are content to live in a boring, suburban world. But for Icarus, who was seen more and known more, it is torture to be living a regular life. 


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ahayo
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@stella I like the idea that you brought up about his neighbors and how they must too live a boring life is Icarus thinks this way about his. But I think it is the opposite. I think that Icarus just sees the bad in the whole situation and just really wants to go back to his normal life (which is his case isn't real) but the people around him don't care, they think their life is just normal and they don't see anything wrong with it.


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aplitstudent123
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@stella I agree with you. I think that if Icarus had been born in and only knew the life that his neighbors had lived, he wouldn't be living in the amount of pain he is living in now. The fact that he has knowledge that his neighbors don't cause him to have something to be driven towards, but also put him in a position where he cannot accept his own personal failure. He feels as though he is above those around him, even though they all have the same abilities. Therefore, in this case, I think Icarus would be better off living a naive life like his neighbors do.


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abuzz
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@stella I agree with your point in the aspect that he would not have his past to compare to what he knows as his miserable present. I do not believe that we know enough about his current status in the working world to truly know whether he would actually like a corporate job if he didn't have his past. It is quite possible that his neighbors are just putting on a mask and actually are miserable themselves, but since this is from Icarus's point of view they seem much happier than him. I am just simply putting out that there may be another side to what you have announced, both being valid but merely just inferences since we only have the poem to work from.


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