Friday, January 6, 2012

A Thin Ray of Moonlight

Daisy and Gatsby (Mia Farrow and Robert Redford)

One of my kids asked me to read Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby so we could discuss it. Reading Gatsby, I noticed some prose poems waiting to be pulled out:

Warm Human Magic
by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Daisy began to sing with the music
in a husky, rhythmic whisper,
bringing out a meaning
in each word
that it had never had before
and would never have again.

When the melody rose,
her voice broke up sweetly,
following it,
in a way contralto voices have,
and each change
tipped out
a little of her warm
upon the air.


by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Almost the last thing I remember
was standing with Daisy
and watching the moving-picture director
and his Star.

were still under
the white-plum tree
and their faces were touching
except for a pale,

It occurred to me
that he had been very slowly
bending toward her
all evening
to attain this proximity,

and even while I watched
I saw him stoop
one ultimate degree
and kiss at her cheek.


* Information about the annual one-day F. Scott Fitzgerald Literary Conference. The conference holds two short story contests which are open to residents of Maryland, Virginia, and Washington D.C.

* The text of The Great Gatsby at Project Gutenberg Australia

Teaching Authors is hosting the Poetry Friday round-up today.


Heidi Mordhorst said...

Congratulations, Tabatha! I have the opportunity to bestow you with an award, offered sincerely:

The Versatile Blogger Award! Come to my juicy little universe to see what it's about.

Tabatha said...

Thanks, Heidi! I'm honored you thought of me :-)

Tara said...

Oh I love this! What a wonderful way to celebrate F.Scott's poetic voice. Thanks for sharing this!

Joy said...

These are beautiful. How clever of you to have found them and to have shaped them into something memorable. Thank you for the post.

Congratulations on your Versatile Blogger Award from Heidi.

Joy Acey

david elzey said...

you know, i think there might be something to the blending of this form -- the cento -- with the way we teach kids literature. we tach them the form, we teach them how to read closely, then we ask them to mash-up and remix the words to make the meaning more personal.

of course, it helps if fitzgerald is your source. i don't think i could do the same thing with melville.

loved these.

Mary Lee said...

Gorgeous prose poems. Makes me want to go back and reread The Great Gatsby!

And how lucky I am that I came over to your blog for once not from the PF permalink, but from your profile in my comments. I've been browsing down and down and down your posts...I could have commented on every one of them! Time to subscribe and come back more often than Friday for your amazing posts! You are, indeed, a versatile blogger!

Irene Latham said...

I'm enamored of that thin ray of moonlight. Thanks so much for sharing!

Carol said...

I love prose poetry. And maybe if someone had helped me to look at through the "eyes of poetry" I might have enjoyed THE GREAT GATSBY a lot more in high school! Thanks for sharing these!