The Great Gatsby Quotes - Page 2 | Just Great DataBase

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They were careless people, Tom and Daisy- they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made.

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The city seen from the Queensboro Bridge is always the city seen for the first time, in its first wild promise of all the mystery and the beauty in the world.

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If personality is an unbroken series of successful gestures, then there was something gorgeous about him, some heightened sensitivity to the promises of life, as if he were related to one of those intricate machines that register earthquakes ten thousand miles away. This responsiveness had nothing to do with that flabby impressionability which is dignified under the name of the "creative temperament"--it was an extraordinary gift for hope, a romantic readiness such as I have never found in any other person and which it is not likely I shall ever find again. No--Gatsby turned out all right at the end; it is what preyed on Gatsby, what foul dust floated in the wake of his dreams that temporarily closed out my interest in the abortive sorrows and short-winded elations of men.

273

For a moment the last sunshine fell with romantic affection upon her glowing face; her voice compelled me forward breathlessly as I listened - then the glow faded, each light deserting her with lingering regret, like children leaving a pleasant street at dusk.

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His dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it. He did not know that it was already behind him.

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And what's more, I love Daisy too. Once in a while I go off on a spree and make a fool of myself, but I always come back, and in my heart I love her all the time.

227

Thirty--the promise of a decade of loneliness, a thinning list of single men to know, a thinning brief-case of enthusiasm, thinning hair.

217

Look at that,' she whispered, and then after a moment: 'I'd like to just get one of those pink clouds and put you in it and push you around.

208

Each night he added to the pattern of his fancies until drowsiness closed down upon some vivid scene with an oblivious embrace. For awhile these reveries provided an outlet for his imagination; they were a satisfactory hint of the unreality of reality, a promise that the rock of the world was founded securely on a fairy's wing.

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I thought of Gatsby's wonder when he first picked out the green light at the end of Daisy's dock. He had come a long way to this lawn and his dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it. He did not know that it was already behind him. [- Nick Carroway]

199

It was one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life.

185

A stirring warmth flowed from her, as if her heart was trying to come out to you concealed in one of those breathless, thrilling words.

164

He knew that when he kissed this girl, and forever wed his unutterable visions to her perishable breath, his mind would never romp again like the mind of God.

157

So I walked away and left him standing there in the moonlight - watching over nothing.

136

The rich get richer and the poor get - children.

135

Dishonesty in a woman is a thing you never blame deeply.

133

I love New York on summer afternoons when everyone's away. There's something very sensuous about it - overripe, as if all sorts of funny fruits were going to fall into your hands.

130

The lights grow brighter as the earth lurches away from the sun.

128

For a transitory enchanted moment man must have held his breath in the presence of this continent, compelled into an aesthetic contemplation he neither understood nor desired, face to face for the last time in history with something commensurate to his capacity for wonder.

127

Murder your darlings.

126

They had never been closer in their month of love, nor communicated more profoundly one with another, than when she brushed silent lips against his coat's shoulder or when he touched the end of her fingers, gently, as though she were asleep.

123

They were careless people, Tom and Daisy—they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness, or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made.

122

Yet high over the city our line of yellow windows must have contributed their share of human secrecy to the casual watcher in the darkening streets, and I was him too, looking up and wondering. I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life.

122

It is invariably saddening to look through new eyes at things upon which you have expended your own powers of adjustment.

121

It occurred to me that there was no difference between men, in intelligence or race, so profound as the difference between the sick and the well.

115

I’m thirty, I said. I’m five years too old to lie to myself and call it honor

114

It makes me sad because I've never seen such--such beautiful shirts before.

110

Human sympathy has its limits.

106

Americans, while occasionally willing to be serfs, have always been obstinate about being peasantry.

106

Then he kissed her. At his lips' touch she blossomed for him like a flower and the incarnation was complete.

103

It's a great advantage not to drink among hard-drinking people. You can hold your tongue, and, moreover, you can time any little irregularity of your own so that everybody else is so blind that they don't see or care.

96

I began to like New York, the racy, adventurous feel of it at night and the satisfaction that the constant flicker of men and women and machines gives to the restless eye. I like to walk up Fifth Avenue and pick out romantic women from the crowd and imagine that in a few minutes I was going to enter their lives, and no one would ever know or disapprove. Sometimes, in my mind, I followed them to their apartments on the corners of hidden streets, and they turned and smiled back at me before they faded through a door into warm darkness. At the enchanted metropolitan twilight I felt a haunting loneliness sometimes, and felt it in others—poor young clerks who loitered in front of windows waiting until it was time for a solitary restaurant dinner—young clerks in the dusk, wasting the most poignant moments of night and life.

90

People disappeared, reappeared, made plans to go somewhere, and then lost each other, searched for each other, found each other a few feet away.

90

Then came the war, old sport. It was a great relief, and I tried very hard to die, but I seemed to bear an enchanted life.

90

He had waited five years and bought a mansion where he dispensed starlight to casual moths - so that he could 'come over' some afternoon to a stranger's garden.

84

It eluded us then, but that’s no matter—tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther. . . . And then one fine morning—So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.

79

Can't repeat the past?" he cried incredulously. "Why of course you can!"He looked around him wildly, as if the past were lurking here in the shadow of his house, just out of reach of his hand.

79

You said a bad driver was only safe until she met another bad driver? Well, I met another bad driver, didn't I? I mean it was careless of me to makes such a wrong guess. I thought you were rather an honest, straightforward person I thought it was your secret pride.""I'm thirty," I said. "I'm five years too old to lie to myself and call it honor."She didn't answer. Angry, and half in love with her, and tremendously sorry, I turned away.

73

So he waited, listening for a moment longer to the tuning-fork that had been struck upon a star.

70

Out of the corner of his eye Gatsby saw that the blocks of the sidewalks really formed a ladder and mounted to a secret place above the trees—he could climb to it, if he climbed alone, and once there he could suck on the pap of life, gulp down the incomparable milk of wonder.His heart beat faster and faster as 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 perishable breath, his mind would never romp again like the mind of God. So he waited, listening for a moment longer to the tuning-fork that had been struck upon a star. Then he kissed her. At his lips’ touch she blossomed for him like a flower and the incarnation was complete. Through all he said, even through his appalling sentimentality, I was reminded of something—an elusive rhythm, a fragment of lost words, that I had heard somewhere a long time ago. For a moment a phrase tried to take shape in my mouth and my lips parted like a dumb man’s, as though there was more struggling upon them than a wisp of startled air. But they made no sound, and what I had almost remembered was uncommunicable forever.

69

The officer looked at Daisy while she was speaking, in a way that every young girl wants to be looked at sometime, and because it seemed romantic to me I have remembered the incident ever since.

60

Through all he said, even through his appalling sentimentality, I was reminded of something-an elusive rhythm, a fragment of lost words, that I heard somewhere a long time ago. For a moment a phrase tried to take shape in my mouth and my lips parted like a dumb man's, as though there was more struggling upon them than a wisp of startled air. But they made no sound and what I had almost remembered was uncommunicable forever.

57

Then wear the gold hat, if that will move her;If you can bounce high, bounce for her too,Till she cry "Lover, gold-hatted, high-bouncing lover,I must have you!

57

one of those men who reach such an acute limited excellence at twenty−one that everything afterward savors of anti−climax.

56

All the bright precious things fade so fast, and they don't come back.

54

A new world, material without being real, where poor ghosts, breathing dreams like air, drifted fortuitously about.

54

He had come a long way to this blue lawn, and his dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it.

52

I'm inclined to reserve all judgments, a habit that has opened up many curious natures to me and also made me the victim of not a few veteran bores.

49

I can't describe to you how surprised I was to find out I loved her, old sport. I even hoped for a while that she'd throw me over, but she didn't, because she was in love with me too. She thought I knew a lot because I knew different things from her. . . . Well, there I was, 'way off my ambitions, getting deeper in love every minute, and all of a sudden I didn't care. What was the use of doing great things if I could have a better time telling her what I was going to do?" On the last afternoon before he went abroad, he sat with Daisy in his arms for a long, silent time. It was a cold fall day, with fire in the room and her cheeks flushed. Now and then she moved and he changed his arm a little, and once he kissed her dark shining hair. The afternoon had made them tranquil for a while, as if to give them a deep memory for the long parting the next day promised. They had never been closer in their month of love, nor communicated more profoundly one with another, than when she brushed silent lips against his coat's shoulder or when he touched the end of her fingers, gently, as though she were asleep.

48

I suppose the latest thing is to sit back and let Mr. Nobody from Nowhere make love to your wife. Well, if that's the idea you can count me out.

48