January 2009 Archives

A Mysterious Man

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I read this book twice before. Once my junior year of highschool, once for pleasure the summer afterward, and this chapter always stuck out as being the one filled most with rumors.

Upon reading the first paragraph in the fourth chapter one can surely figure out that everyone knows Gatsby and his place is the 'place to be' so to say-

"ON SUNDAY MORNING while church bells rang in the villages alongshore, the world and its mistress returned to Gatsby's hosue and twinkled hilariously on his lawn."

Soon he clears up some mystery about himself to Nick,

"I am the son of some wealthy people in the Middle West---all dead now. I was brought up in America but educated at Oxford, because all my ancestors have been educated there for many years. It is a family tradition."  [Fitzgerald, 65]

However, Nick did not buy it because of the way Gatsby looked at him sideways.

 

 

"Yellow Cocktail Music"

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"The lights grow brighter as the earth lurches away from the sun, and now the orchestra is playing yellow cocktail music, and the opera of voices pitches a key higher. Laughter is easier minute by minute, spilled with prodigality, tipped out at a cheerful word. The groups change more swiftly, swell with new arrivals, dissolve and form in the same breath;..."

In Chapter three, you can get a sense of drunkenness with describing a color in music. it also makes you imagine that the evening is in a daze, and people are not even paying attention to the things they speaking, or laughing about.

After Apple Picking

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This poem by Frost follows a certain chaotic rhyme scheme, the first few lines going
A
B
B
A
C
C
D
and so on

I felt as if I was right beside him as he went throughout this poem.

"Of the great harvest I myself desired.
There were ten thousand fruit to touch,
Cherish in hand, lift down, and let not fall.
For all
That struck the earth,
No matter if not bruised or spiked with stubble,
Went surely to the cider-apple heap
As of no worth"

He is saying here that he is sick of his work, and has had so much that he is even dreaming about it as the seasons are changing.
Frost personifies the selection of apples as if they are at Auschwitz and it is either life or death for them; apple or cider. If they even graced the ground they were 'selected' and taken at once.

"This sleep of mine, whatever sleep it is.
Were he not gone,
The woodchuck could say whether it's like his
Long sleep, as I describe its coming on,
or just some human sleep."

He is asking himself if he is going into a sort of 'hybernation,' dying, or just sleeping a normal night's sleep. Either way, he is lost without his work it seems.



it seem like in this poem he is talking about the changing of seasons from fall to winter, and he has done so much of his work that he is now dreaming of it.


Unfaithful

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There are a few times throughout chapter two that you can tell Wilson's wife was not interested in him at all. I mean, she IS Tom's mistress, even though he has a wife of his own.
One of these times begin one page 25

"She smiled slowly and, walking through her husband as if her were a ghost, shook hands with Tom, looking him flush in the eye. Then she wet her lips, and without turning around spoke to her husband in a soft, coarse voice:
  "Get some chairs, why don't you, so somebody can sit down."

She spoke to her husband as if he was a servant, and Tom was a new love. From that moment in the book, the words Fitzgerald uses, you can tell that Tom means more to her than Wilson himself does. It makes us wonder, however, how would they pull this off, in a real-life situation, in the 1920's.

A Lesson from Father

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Chapter one.
On the first page, Nick is explaining his father's advice
"Whenever you feel like criticizing any one," he told me, "just remember that all the people in this world haven't had the advantages that you've had."

This quote really hits home with me because of just leaving high school about a year ago and entering the real world. Everyone was so judgmental of people, and even I was guilty of this sometimes. His father is right, especially when you didn't know the person you were judging. Who knows what that person has gone though? There are always people who have it worse than you.

Later in the chapter Daisy was telling Nick about her daughter being born.

"She told me it was a girl, and so I turned my head away and wept. 'All right,' I said, 'I'm glad it's a girl. And I hope she'll be a fool---that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool.'
Women have come such a long way since the 1800's, did Fitzgerald really have to be that harsh? Tom has a mistress and his wife is disgusted in having a girl because she think they are just fools?







Nothing Gold Can Stay

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When I first read this poem over I immediately thought it was about fall turning into winter because of imagery to flowers and leaves.
Then I began thinking about the sunrise and sunset, how they only lasted a short amount of time. However, as I read on it seemed to have a deep meaning as to say that everything good comes to an end, a rather pessimistic view on life,

"So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day,
Nothing gold can stay."


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