One of my favorite new websites this winter is “By Heart.” The brilliant series by The Atlantic shares essays in which authors share and discuss their all-time favorite passages in literature. One of the best that I’ve read is written by author Ron Carlson about his love for F. Scott Fitzgerald.
Carlson writes, “When I was an undergraduate at the University of Utah, I wrote in a library book for the first and only time. I was reading a story by F. Scott Fitzgerald called ‘The Sensible Thing.’ When I got to the last paragraph, a classic Fitzgerald line about lost love almost regained and lost again. It goes like this,
Well, let it pass, he thought; April is over, April is over. There are all kinds of love in the world, but never the same love twice.
“I couldn’t help myself. I think I wrote: Look at this! As if I were some kind of guide or imprimatur. There was an ache in it, an astonishing ache even in the context of the abundant rue and sorrow of Fitzgerald’s stories, and it felt so much bigger than me. It stirred me so deeply I had to leave some kind of mark.”
Beautiful, right? There is more to the essay here and I highly recommend reading the entire essay if your a writer, a reader, or even just a romantic.