Killer Past Essay

1558 words - 7 pages

Life's story is comprised of events from the past. But, if the past one presents is a lie, then the story can never be real. In The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Gatsby imagines and creates a past to impress his love, Daisy. But, Daisy has a history of her own, and she is living for the present while Gatsby dedicates his life to what he and Daisy had in the past. The American Dream is the opportunity and pursuit of success and happiness. Gatsby gets so consumed in the idea of Daisy, that he loses the real idea of the American Dream, and he molds an ideal version of Daisy to be his new American Dream. Gatsby buys the house across from Daisy, throws parties in the hope that she will ...view middle of the document...

Here, Gatsby sees that the sidewalk becomes a ladder to a tree, and in that tree he knows he would find the Holy Grail, and with it eternal life. He also knows that he has to climb alone, because Daisy is not pure of heart. The choice between immortality and Daisy needed to be made when “Daisy's white face came up to his own. He knew that when he kissed this girl, and forever wed his unutterable visions to her parish breath, his mind would never romp again like the mind of God...Then he kissed her” (110-111). Gatsby was limited by Daisy's mortality, because flesh weighs more than the spirt does. By kissing Daisy, Gatsby is no longer pure, and he can no longer live like God or be pure in spirit. He is now mortal. Gatsby had to choose between living the mortal life with Daisy and immortality, and he chose Daisy. This is when Daisy becomes Gatsby's purpose in life. His purpose can no longer be to be Godly or to find the Holy Grail, so now his purpose is to be with Daisy. But, shortly following this event Gatsby goes off to war and Daisy doesn't wait for him to get back. She marries Tom, and has a child. Gatsby comes back and thinks that “they were to go back to Louisville and be married from her house- just as if it were five years ago” (109). This shows that Gatsby wanted to turn back time and pretend like it was five years ago. He could not move on without Daisy after the war, so he makes up a new life for himself, in which Daisy would be a perfect wife. Now all he needs is to win Daisy back, and throwing huge parties wasn't working since Daisy wasn't coming.
Gatsby is never able to move on from his past with Daisy, and throwing parties in the hope that she will attend doesn't seem to be working. So, Nick sets up a meeting, and Gatsby does everything he can to make his meeting with Daisy perfect. The day of the meeting Gatsby is very nervous and the whole situation is extremely awkward, but “Luckily the clock took this moment to tilt dangerously at the pressure of his head, whereupon he turned and caught it with trembling fingers and set it back into place” (86). This shows that Gatsby is stuck in the past because a clock tells time. So, the clock is symbolizing the time Gatsby has spent on Daisy. By catching the clock Gatsby is catching the past that he spent with Daisy, and he is saving the worth of everything he has done for her in the past five years. His fingers were shaking because if he had dropped the clock and it broke, then his time spent with Daisy and their relationship in the past would have been broke too. He carefully set the clock right back in its spot, so that it was safe.
Now the parties stop. There is no reason for them anymore, because he is with Daisy now, and that is all he has been working for over the past five years. Gatsby realizes this and Nick watches as the emotions he is feeling become visible on his face.
He had passed visibly through two states and was entering upon a third. After...

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