Icarus Landing

Whosoever should soar to great heights

Shall encounter there no earthly delights

But instead will grasp with empty hand

Treasures found not upon land

At least, that's what Icarus was told

By a gym teacher, weary and old

While others ran upon the beaten track

Gymnastics felt like a torture rack

A missing credit, a too-full class

Had caught up to Icarus at last

He found no solace in the art of grace

And instead he wished to hide his face

From the tauntings of his male classmates

A new word he'd learned: emasculate

The girls would tease and mock him too:

He lived on earth while they all flew

His pirouettes were clumsy at best

And he'd always dismount flat on his chest

But his teacher decided not to quit

For he saw a boy of tumbling spirit

After school, he spent grueling hours

Teaching Icarus a gymnast's power

Soon none could match his hard-earned skill

And none loved like him the acrobatic thrill

His teacher said, "You must compete,"

When he saw the boy'd taste no defeat

And so it came, one sunny day

When gymnasts gathered round to play

With air and physics, to throw their weight

When Icarus would finally meet his fate

To turn to love what once was hate

To see how well his work would rate

But before the match, teacher takes him aside

"My boy, I do not wish to hide,"

"Your skill that should bring you pride,"

"Nor your hard work or bold spirit inside,"

"But should you set your sights too high,"

"You'll meet an end that horrifies."

Icarus paid the man no heed: 

He'd worked to hard to neglect height and speed

To disregard the air divine

"I've come," he said, "to claim what's mine."

Icarus steps up to the bar;

He'll make it now, he's come this far

And swings with strong and sturdy hand

As feet lift off from grasping land

Higher and higher, Icarus swings

As he forgets earthly things

He lifts off! There he goes!

The judges gasp: he's head below toes

And suddenly, he's hit the mat

On his chest (like his pride) he's fallen flat

Whosoever should soar to great heights

Shall encounter there no earthly delights

But if he pushes off with prideful hand

He'll find himself soon back on land

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