Winged sandals never go out of fashion,
Though styles shift
Ratios of heels to soles, clods to compassion;
What is this fascination with fasten
Subjected to the force of lift?
Winged helmets, too, fit contrary
To fitness, in ornaments that burgeoned once
As horns and jewels, the opposite of airy,
The opposite of birds — bones hollow and light —
But cast in rigid plumes, they brandish turbulence
On skulls not yet equilibrated for flight.
So that when it comes to winged horses —
And the musculature all wrong,
And the spine insufficiently strong,
And the utter lack of adaptation to forces
Aerodynamic where Equus of course is
Never found but aerial creatures belong…
Talaria, the shoes with wings for laces,
One hesitates to quantify for fear they will
Return to earth, though ordinary paces
Still fit the definition of ethereal.
NOTES for Students of English
Equilibrated ‐ (Pronounced e-KWIL-i-brā-ted) Counterbalanced.
Equus – (Pronounced EK-wis) The genus of horses.
Talaria – (Pronounced ta-LER-i-a) The winged sandals of the god Mercury or Hermes; from the Latin talaris “pertaining to the ankles,” from talus “ankle.”