Editor’s Note: In honor of National Poetry Month, we’re opening this month’s patron-exclusive book club to the public. We hope you enjoy The Great Gatsby and poetry!
The Great Gatsby Book Club
National Poetry Month is here, but that doesn’t mean we need to neglect the other genres until May Day. In fact, I’m going to host a book club on my favorite novel, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, all month.
Perhaps you’ve read Gatsby in high school, or seen one of the movie versions, or just heard the title over the years along with some references to a green light, “‘ol’ sport,” or the eyes of T.J. Eckelberg. Or maybe it’s all new to you, which, in some ways, makes me jealous that you have the opportunity to experience it for the first time! The story of love-(or is it dream?)-lorn Gatsby, trusty narrator Nick, the highbrow Buchanans, and the downtrodden residents of the Valley of Ashes have captured and complicated the American imagination since the novel’s release in 1925.
But wait: there’s a poetic twist!
As a book club, we’ll spend the month writing our way through Gatsby with our own poems, delving deeply into these complex characters and themes with the careful attention the book deserves and inspires. The short novel is in many ways an extended poem, with Fitzgerald’s every word, image, and even punctuation mark showing that the how, not just the what, of telling a story is what lodges it in our hearts.
You don’t have to have The Great Gatsby, or poetry writing, for that matter, all figured out in order to participate in this book club. In fact, I hope that during our journey together, we will discover that
1) writing poetry as we read will help us better understand the novel and
2) reading the novel as we write will help us create inspired poems.
Daisy is beckoning with her melodious laughter. The green light is blinking. Will you join me?
The Great Gatsby Reading Schedule
April 7: Chapters 1-2
April 14: Chapters 3-4
April 21: Chapters 5-6
April 28: Chapters 7-9
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