Landscape with the Fall of Icarus

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Even in the chosen title, Williams begins to take away from Icarus’ death. Williams parallels a grave incident with an average object, a typical landscape painting, nothing special, definitely no Mona Lisa. He does not choose to paint a picture describing the fall of Icarus, he chooses to paint a picture of an everyday landscape that just happens to contain the fall of a wondrous flying boy. An odd thing about the ironic title is “Icarus” positioned at the end of the title line paradoxically contradicts the original irony of the title. Though Icarus does not hold a substantial bit of the poem, he does hold the most emphatic position in the line. The seasonal setting of the poem is in the spring, recalling a rejuvenation of nature, but also to contrast the budding and blooming the mind brings up a loathsome connotation to the season. “April is the saddest month…” Often when the spring brings back life and beauty after a barren winter it does not gladden, but depresses when there is nothing to rejoice in but reminiscences, memories, and longings. An interesting component in the poem is the lack of punctuation. The poem results very much like a painting in the sense that it is looked upon as a whole opposed to individual thoughts, which are difficult to discern in the poem. All the thoughts and words run together to form one ‘painting’ in the reader’s head. The very last thing touched upon is the actual death of poor Icarus, which is the smallest and most unnoticeable component in Brueghl’s painting. The Red Wheelbarrow

In The Red Wheelbarrow, Williams has only two verbs, “depends” and “glazed,” and “glazed” is actually a passive participle, “ [having been] glazed with rain…” leaving the entire poem to be governed by this one verb, depends. Williams stresses this dependency with the structure of the poem, which he composes with couplets. After the first couplet where the dependency is established, the following three couplets are all adjectival...
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