Icarus fell for the sea, found that waxed wings were too
heavy, winced at blisters formed on his shoulder blades.
Icarus tried to carve shavings off the ends, pluck white
faux feathers from divine intervention. Icarus didn’t
even like flying. He loved to fall. Icarus knew he was
a candle in waiting. When the sun called him up with
brightness and warmth, Icarus saw a way out. The sun
beckoned and melted and freed Icarus to the sea. Salt
can sting and soothe all at once but it is cleansing. The
sea caught him in its vast arms and cooled his singed
head and kissed away the burns on his back. Icarus fell
asleep in the sweet push and pull of the midday tide. He
would never see land again and he was happy. Salt coated
his eyelashes and lips. The sea fished his heart out.
How do you leave someone who won’t even look you in the eye?
Sometimes I think Eurydice had forgotten
how to feel lonely. She’d forgotten how
to miss Spring. She’d forgotten how to
miss the kiss of a boy whose lips knew
singing better than kissing. Maybe she
begged him to turn around. Maybe he
didn’t want to hear her screams. Maybe
she thought she would burn in the sunlight.
Maybe she was scared. Maybe Orpheus
would still only know how to be a musician.
Maybe he would still fail to understand
that she tuned him, she was the resin
to his strings. She left nail marks in his
shoulder from trying to drag him from
the light to face her for a moment.
Amber Louise Horne is an undergraduate student at the University of Worcester, studying English Literature and Creative Writing. For two years running, she has competed with the University’s team at UniSlam, where she has placed in the semi-finals. She has been published in Small Leaf Press’s magazine Jaden.