Archives for category: The Great Gatsby Anthology

Skill in Need
by Jacalyn Carley

I imagine
working night’s whetstone, honing
somnambulant pleasures —
falling asleep.

I imagine
dropping anchor in night’s harbor,
quieting unruly passengers in the brain —
waking up eight hours later.

IMAGE: “Ladder to the Moon” by Georgia O’Keeffe (1958)

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This poem was inspired by the prompt, pure and simple, thinking it might be possible to make poetry from restless sleep, to squeeze an iota of text from the sweats and doubts, the flotsam and jetsam, of bad nights.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jacalyn Carley is a writer, teacher, and former choreographer who lives in Berlin, Germany. She is On-site Director for Sarah Lawrence College’s Summer Arts in Berlin program, and has had poems published in Borders, Silver Birch Press, Painters, and She has authored four books (all only available in German translation) and is working on a full-length collection of poems about the nude.

rolling docks
by Sheikha A.

in the green light, the orgastic future that year
somewhere back in the vast obscurity beyond
I walked a blue lawn lined with purple clovers

the world unknown in the way of a thing known
on the brooding despairs of your paths, I walked
in the green light, the orgastic future that year

the dark fields heaved of life where she grew
where my name would become borne by the air
I walked a blue lawn lined with purple clovers

she shined in disjointed ways of a broken star
the docks rolled out luring me into her world
in the green light, the orgastic future that year

I beat my boats to fly across unlimited waters
to where my heart on her sleeves would bloom
I walked a blue lawn lined with purple clovers

each night would command me to labour on
where my youthful hope flared, I walked on
in the green light, the orgastic future that year
somewhere back in the vast obscurity beyond

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: There isn’t a single line that I would have not liked to use from the entire book, because The Great Gatsby is like passages of one memorable line after another. But I limited myself to the last paragraphs of the book and decided to do a found villanelle form – I had to literally ‘beat my boats’ on this to live up to Gatsby and his magnificent aura. The character Gatsby himself is all poetry – I think I’m happy I also limited myself to the 19 lines that is the prerequisite of a villanelle, otherwise I’d have beat on writing limitlessly about him. I realized Daisy can never be removed from Gatsby even in writing merely about Gatsby, and that is the beauty of his poetics – his character – that wore the identity of Daisy as his own.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sheikha A. currently lives in Karachi, Pakistan after having moved from the United Arab Emirates and believes the transition has definitely stimulated a different tunnel of thought. She is the author of a short poetry collection titled Spaced [Hammer and Anvil Books, 2013]. Her work appears in numerous publications and anthologies, and she hopes for her poetry to be read and discussed widely. She also edits poetry for eFiction India. Her poems can be tracked via her blog

Erasure _ Shankar
Chapter 9 Erasure Poem
by Shloka Shankar

the shadowy glow
of the moon began
to melt away

I became the whispers
of all human dreams;
neither understood nor desired,

face to face with
the orgastic future.

SOURCE: An erasure culled out from Chapter 9 of The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Shloka Shankar is a freelance writer from India. She loves experimenting with all forms of the written word, and has found her niche in Japanese short-forms and found poetry. Some of her poems have recently appeared in Eunoia Review, Oddball Magazine, Of/with, A Hundred Gourds, The Bamboo Hut, and The Other Bunny. She is also the founding editor of the literary & arts journal, Sonic Boom.

Gatsby final page.,,,,with markings
The current
by Patrick T. Reardon

A ferryboat.
The moon.
Inessential houses.
The old island.
Vanished trees.
This continent.

This blue lawn.
That vast obscurity.
The dark fields.

Green light.

SOURCE: Erasure poem from the final page of The Great Gatsby. 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Patrick T. Reardon’s five books include four of religious reflections. He has been writing newspaper articles, essays, poems, op-ed pieces and more over a writing career that began in 1962. His website is

Lines for The Couch Bleeding4
SOURCE: [an erasure poem from The Great Gatsby, Chapter 2,

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Found poems and replacement poems have been in my repertoire as I’ve used them as a teaching method to ease self-proclaimed non-poets into poetry. “Steal!” I encourage them. However, I’ve never tried my hand at an erasure poem. Until now. Inspired by the poems I see in flipping through the pages of The Great Gatsby Anthology, I scrolled through the Gutenberg version of Fitzgerald’s novel until a phrase jumped at me. From there, I selected the surrounding passage, and read straight through, mining for the underlying poem. It kind of wrote itself.

367Christina M Rau Headshot 1

Christina M. Rau
is the author of the poetry chapbooks WakeBreatheMove (Finishing Line Press, 2015) and For The Girls, I (Dancing Girl Press, 2014). Founder of Poets In Nassau, a reading circuit on Long Island, New York, her poetry has appeared on gallery walls in The Ekphrastic Poster Show, on car magnets for The Living Poetry Project, most recently in the journals Redheaded Stepchild and The Main Street Rag, and in the anthologies Till The Tide: An Anthology of Mermaid Poetry (Sundress Publications, 2015) and The Great Gatsby Anthology (Silver Birch Press, 2015). In her non-writing life, she practices yoga occasionally and line dances on other occasions. Find her links on

Jay Gatsby in the Ninth Race
by James Penha

There may be something in this
horsey metaphor from life not far
from Great Neck Saturday
at Belmont Park: a long shot
Jay Gatsby drawing the first post
position in the penultimate race
was defeated by Smooth Daddy
but paid off handsomely in place
to hold Sly Tom merely to show.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: A proud contributor to The Great Gatsby Anthology, James Penha was at Belmont Park Race Track on September 19, 2015 and found a poem when he saw Jay Gatsby in the ninth race.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I’ve always thought of the ending of The Great Gatsby as one of the perfect endings in literature, and rereading it in the age of climate change, I wondered how much of Fitzgerald’s “green breast of the new world” would be left above water if the oceans continue to rise. I imagined Nick Caraway as the rueful, elegiac recorder of the last days of humanity.


Kathryn Kulpa
has been writing since she was old enough to hold a pen — actually, a crayon. She has work featured or forthcoming in The Great Gatsby Anthology, Smokelong Quarterly, KYSO Flash, and Saranac Review. She is flash fiction editor for Cleaver magazine and she teaches fiction workshops for teens and adults in the smallest state in the union.

Photo: Kathryn Kulpa at age 13 in Massachusetts with her dog Toto.

stop failure
by Laurie Kolp

scrawl, draw stone, sprawl out
              a rose, melt
green trees pander, whisper
dreams of contemplation

I brood on blue obscurity,
the dark fields under night—
the light will stretch arms farther
              into the past

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I let the words lead me through darkness until a poem was born. I scrolled to the end of the book and selected words that I felt sounded good together. Then I worked on creating a poem from them, deleting some of the words from my original poem until I was satisfied with the finished product.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Laurie Kolp, author of Upon the Blue Couch (Winter Goose Publishing, 2014) and Hello It’s Your Mother (Finishing Line Press, October 2015), has poems appearing in Concho River Review, Iodine Poetry Journal, Red River Review, and more. She lives by a river, but much prefers the beach. You can find out more about her at

Laid Away Already in Lavender
Found poem with added punctuation using
Chapter Eight of The Great Gatsby
by Jennifer Finstrom

He had never been in such a beautiful house before:
rose petals blown, the bright luxury of star-shine.

It was a cold fall day with fire in the room.
Even though she was gone from it, redolent
of orchids, pervaded with a melancholy beauty.

Ghostly birds began to sing among the blue leaves.
We pushed aside curtains that were like pavilions,
filling the house with grey turning, gold turning light.

Small grey clouds took on fantastic shapes,
summing up the sadness and suggestiveness of life:
poor ghosts, breathing dreams like air.

But it was all going by too fast now: a hundred pairs
of golden and silver slippers shuffled the shining dust.

IMAGE: “Oui” by George Barbier (1921).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I love found poetry, but this is the first The Great Gatsby found poem I’ve ever written. It was such a pleasure retyping Fitzgerald’s sentences that I’m certain I’ll return to his work again soon.



Jennifer Finstrom
 teaches in the First-Year Writing Program, tutors in writing, and facilitates a writing group, Writers Guild, at DePaul University. She has been the poetry editor of Eclectica Magazine since October of 2005, and recent publications include Escape Into LifeMidwestern GothicNEAT, and YEW Journal. She also has work appearing in the Silver Birch Press The Great Gatsby Anthology and forthcoming in the Alice in Wonderland Anthology.

the great gone
by Diane Castiglioni

I lightly at later
stood side by side
peremptorily called “Wait!”
opening up again
in a flower-like way
even vaguely
on account of
being rumored
less remotely
confused and disgusted
less surprising
than depressed
by a book making him
nibble at the edge of
his peremptory heart.

out in pools of light
while on an abandoned
loud bright night
beating in the trees
full bellows of the earth
blew the frogs
across the moonlight
I was not alone
the shadow of silver
leisurely suggested
our local heavens.

a sudden intimation
stretched out
in a curious way
sworn trembling
Involuntarily seaward
–and distinguished
a single green light
that might have
looked vanished
in the unquiet darkness.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This is an erasure poem made from the last two pages of Chapter 1 of The Great Gatsby.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Diane Castiglioni is a contributing author to the French work Dictionnaire Universel du Pain (Bouquin Laffont, 2011), and an editor of the International Cooperation for the Development of Space (ATWG, 2012). She works as collaborative consultant, hosts poetry events, and has poems published by various small presses, as well as poems and stories published in two anthologies.