Ion displacement won't work in the basement
Especially when I'm not with you
Here in the heartland, a feeling so startling
I don't what I should do
Oh Bryn! You see in the dark
Right past the fireflies that sleep in my heart
You know, it's easy to see
Wait for the season to come back to me
Lights by the ocean
A westerly motion that moves California to sea
Eyes like a seagull
No Kansas-born beetle could ever come close to that free
BRYN- Vampire Weekend
A\N: Written to BRYN by Vampire Weekend. Lyrics included for maximized effect. Set around The Great Depression.
It was summer again. The slow, insistent beat of the fireflies and cicadas marked the beginning of the season. It became harder to forget, as the seasons passed; time reopened the wound. Every now and then, someone would drop by looking for "Nick Carraway." He'd answer the calls, but, neglect the name. It was the schedule that got him, he decided two years later. The schedule, and the tombstone. It was ornate. He was buried as James Gatz, rather than Jay Gatsby. Year by year, they were falling like stars. The people of New York City. First, the mass suicides, then the flocks of gangly-bodied teens that reminded him of himself. In the days of his youth, that was. And again, he was alone. Occasionally, he'd entertain a guest. But, mostly, he kept to himself. Lived alone. Dreamed alone. Desired alone.
There had been no will, no golden-sequined hand, no white-laced dresses out in the Midwest. He liked the rough country air. Jay Gatsby loved the rough country air. He took the name as his own—there was no law against that. A cup of rum helped him to forget. The privilege, the pain.
He was satisfied on West Egg, looking towards the impossibility. And he was a damn fool for being that way. He threw the cup against the porch out of anger, forcing fissures across its surface, before realizing that it was his only good cup, and he would have nothing to serve guests with. He picked up the pieces, resolving to rinse them in the morning, and re-sell them as fine porcelain later. They would still fetch a tidy sum, he amounted. Perhaps enough to lay a new row of corn.
Then there was the farm. It was his own. Bought with whatever money Mr. Gatz had given him. Substantial enough to raise two cows, large enough to cover himself with his own thoughts. Occasionally, he'd wander upon a memory he thought not to be his: the memories Gatsby had meant for Daisy, and that Nick had accidentally stumbled upon.
He'd always face the pillow. Hear Daisy whispered into his left ear. A rumor had told Gatsby that she was hard of hearing in her right. And he was stupid for believing it.
The anger was displaced. Once his rage subsided, he went back into the small home, and set out two plates. One for himself, and another just in case. He half-expected someone to come stumbling into the house "Missed me, Old Sport?" But there was no such person.
He was so close. Like that child of the engineer. Built wax wings so he could fly, but disgraced himself by flying too close to the sun. He picked up the telephone, before placing it back in its spot, and cursing his own indecision.
The years had really flown by. Every now and then, he'd talk to Mr. Gatz. Filled with loathing for the man who could do much more than curse Gatsby. He'd wanted to call Tom Buchanan. But, he didn't have the courage to call. He couldn't bear to hear that voice.
The mirror-woman stared back at him, only to be shattered too. Even at forty years of age, he still looked too much like the elusive shadow. It still taunted him, from the land behind the window. It had been so beautiful, once. And perhaps, that had been enough for him.