That each time you read it, it will be different, different as you are from the last time you read it.
That each time the words will be the same but you will find new meaning in them.
For the first time, what they say is actually true. I've been reading The Great Gatsby for years now, ever since we did it in high school as a setwork. The first time I read it, it was just a love story, a boy from the wrong side of the tracks and an upper class spoilt girl who would ultimately choose money over all else. Each time I read it, I see how much Fitzgerald was saying about the age in which he wrote it. I see how it is more than just a love story, it is a delicately crafted narrative that at its highest level talks about the realities of existence."Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter - tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther... And one fine morning -So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past."
The element of time is extremely important in the novel. The idea of reliving the past and hoping for the future, perhaps losing sight of the present, perhaps being completely out of time itself.
When I read my favourite novel again this week, it was like I had never read it all. We are all chasing a hopeful, bright future. At heart all people I think are Gatsby's. No matter how cynical and withdrawn, no matter how immersed in reality we are, somewhere inside there's that quiet relentless hope for the future that gets us out of bed in the morning. If we lost it entirely, there would be no point to anything we did.
But as we are, we are creatures of the past - shaped and moulded by where we have come from, who we have met and the things we have done. And while we chase after the future so enthusiastically, our pasts draw us in, draw us back. The reality is that people are who they are and life is what it is, and though we think we become what we hope for in the future, we will not attain it. We already are who we're going to be.
Photo: Emdot (cc)
Peace and love
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