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"Flight 063" by Brian Aldiss - Analysis

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The poem Flight 063 by Brian Aldiss compares the business flight 063 to Icarus grand flight. Aldiss shows a different side of Icarus, showing the bright side of him, his flight, rather than about his great fall. While talking about Icarus flight, Aldiss talks about corporate men flying high over the Arctic Circle, without a care in the world about flying up in the sky, having it be a normal part of their lives, unlike Icarus, who only flew once. Aldiss tries to say that one should reflect on the good things in life instead of just the bad and to make the best of life.

The diction used to describe Icarus flight and Flight 063 shows the difference in the style of flying that they are using. Why always speak of Icarus fall?(1). Well, everyone always remembers the bad things that happen in life, and the only good things remembered are those that impact the whole world. There is a poster somewhere that says, When I do something good, nobody remembers. When I do something bad, nobody ever forgets. That poster shows how everybody dwells on the bad, but Aldiss is showing that you should remember the good as well.

The everyday was lost in his ascent (25-26) shows that when Icarus was flying, everything normal went away during his cliff-top jump, The leap of heart, the blue air scaled his glorious sense of life Imperiled (21-24). Icarus was doing what no other man has done- fly up high into the sky. His glorious flight into the sun left his sense of life gone, just wanting to fly closer to the sun, becoming a beautiful thing. Yet [w]hy always speak of Icarus fall?(1) when his flight was so much more.

The allusions used to describe Icarus fall embellish on the fact that it could either be small and insignificant, or large and memorable. For example, that little splash which caught the eye of Brueghel refers to the famous painting, The Fall of Icarus. If you look at it, it looks like a regular scene of ancient Greece, but if you look closely in the bottom right hand corner, there is someone- Icarus- drowning in the water. Brueghel shows that Icarus fall was unimportant to the normal lives of the Greeks. The myth of Icarus is the main allusion in this poem. Aldiss uses the story of Icarus to state a point that before the fall the flight was (14). Before the tragic fall, there was a great flight of Icarus, which we barely remember in our minds. When we hear Icarus, we think of a man whose wax wings have melted and who has fallen into the sea instead of a man who has accomplished flight, accomplished the discovery of the world in the air, and a man who found out that humans can fly. This is similar to how we think of Adam and Eve. —just before The Edenic Fall, [Adam] had that first taste of Eve (15-17). We think of only that if Adam and Eve hadnt been so foolish as to eat from the Tree of Knowledge that there would be no evil in this world, and that we would be immortal; we dont focus on what was happening before the eating of the fruit. They were in paradise. That just slips our minds sometimes and we only dwell on what happened afterwards.

The best things in life are meant to be remembered, and the bad things are there just to remind you that youre human. Aldiss is trying to tell people that the best things of life should be enjoyed, and one should take heed silly limitations as the melting point of wax (28-29).

Sources: Flight 063 by Brian Aldiss

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