Mark Twain once said “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme. ” This quote means that people can never exactly recreate something and feel the way they did before but they can always achieve something similar. Len the novel the Great Gatsby we come across this same idea of people trying to repeat the past but only get as close to rhyme of the past. In the novel we see Gatsby who is blinded by the past and was unable to live in the present.
Gatsby was so focused on recreating his past with Daisy and reliving the “golden days”. Gatsby pursed visions of his future that were determined by his past. He lived with this nostalgic feeling of his past that kept him from living his present instead of letting go and realizing that Daisy was not the same girl she once was he kept going until one day he was no longer alive to keep fighting because the dream he was had drove him to death. “Can’t repeat the past? ” he cried incredulously. “Why of course you can” (Fitzgerald 116).
Nick told Gatsby his opinion on not being able to repeat the past and Gatsby was absolutely shocked by his comment. He felt like the past was the only thing that kept him going in life and that his soul purpose was to repeat it. Unfortunately for him it is not that simple. Daisy had moved on she has started a life without Gatsby when where she had a family and a daughter whom she loved very much. Gatsby soon came to this realization that Daisy’s daughter is an aspect of her present and will always will in her future.
Even though Gatsby had seen this child him self he continues trying to deny the present. Daisy though who plays a vital role in Gatsby obsession over the past doesn’t see things the way he does. Daisy is driven back into their relationship and can’t help but love Gatsby like she always did. Daisy is driven crazy by her feelings for Gatsby but accepts the present and her child and marriage with Tom. She knows she can’t erase all that and that it will always be a part of her Just like Gatsby will always be in her heart. Oh, you want too much! ” she cried to Gatsby. “l love you now – isn’t that enough? I can’t help what’s past. ” She began to sob helplessly. “l did love him once – but I loved you too. ” (103) . This exact quote of the book explains that you can’t change the past what happened happened all you can do s move forward and live with it. Life doesn’t come with do over or repeats and Daisy seems to get that but Gatsby doesn’t. Daisy’s never going to be that golden girl again.
Readers can sense the fact that Gatsby is pushing Daisy to think the way he does but she Just can’t. With Daisy we are exposed to a different aspect that Fitzgerald finds more appropriate for people which is accepting the past but learning to live with it in the future. Fitzgerald is trying to teach us that being stuck in the past doesn’t get you anywhere and sometimes you have to move on rather than hold on he past and accept to relive it because that is impossible.
Fitzgerald does teach us though how much the past influences the present and that there is always a reason people act they why they do something that happened in their past perhaps that is still a part of them and always will be. In the book we are exposed to many scenes and dialogues where the past is influencing the present an example of one is the fact that the whole book is based on Nick talking about the past and we see the influence is had on him as a writer in the present day. The whole concept of the book focus on his delusion and obsession Gatsby has about recreating his love with Daisy.
The last line of the book says that “we beat on,boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past”. (172) Fitzgerald raps up the book with an interesting opinion because at first glance people would think this contradicts everything he was trying to teach his readers about never living in the past but if read carefully people will realize what he is really trying to say, which is that you can’t return from the past. Somehow in life the past and the present always have a way of mingling.