And now they pause on that hill where Dedalus,
At the end of his flight, first fluttered to earth:
He had risked himself to the sky, away and afloat
To the north, through the cold air, unprecedented,
Rowing with wings—which he then dedicated
To you, Phoebus Apollo, there on the spot
Where he landed, and built in your honour
A mighty temple, the doors of it decorated
With scenes in relief. First the death of Androgeos.
Then the stricken Athenians, doomed to deliver
Seven grown-up sons for sacrifice every year.
There too stood the empty urn, from which
Only now the fatal lots had been drawn.
On the opposite leaf, the land of Knossos
Rising out of the sea: here was the horn-cruel bull
With Pasiphaë under him (a congress
Her cunning arranged), whence would be born
The Minotaur, crossbreed and offspring
Of abominable desire. Also shown:
The bewildering, intricate maze— Never got through until
Dedalus, out of pity For infatuated Ariadne,
Guided a prince’s blind footsteps
With a payout of thread, past every wrong turn
And every dead end he himself had devised
And constructed. In which grand design
You too would figure significantly,
Icarus, had sorrow allowed it. Twice
Dedalus tried to model your fall in gold, twice
His hands, the hands of a father, failed him.