Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Language of Dying

Sarah Pinborough
The Language of Dying

PS Publishing, 2009

«There is a language to dying. It creeps like a shadow alongside the passing years and none of us can avoid oit taste in our mouths. Whether we are sick or healthy it finds us eventually. It is a secret hushed thing that lives in the whisper of the nurses' starched skirts as they rustle up and down our stairs. They've taught me to face the language a syllable at a time, slowly creating an unwilling meaning from it ». So begins this story about dying. In the family the father dies, and five his children gather in the home to be with his father the last few days before his death. The story is told by one of the daughters, who took care of his father, while everyone else went away and minded their own businesses. The story tells from the first person view, but with permanent patches of the second person, this is a kind of monologue, addressed to the dying. Coming father's death is not only the death of one individual, but also the death of the family, its disintegration. A few days before his death it’s the last chance for children to stay together, reunite, solve problems, to forgive one another, and then again to return to their lives, not particularly good ones (especially for the three brothers).

A reader of the novella is also supposed to become a member of the family as an equal surviving parent's death. Inside everything stops, you are a little shaking, throat dry. In such cases, the death of someone else always seems worse than your own.

Before his death, a person leaves all too much, and no one is between here and there. So reading this book, the reader is left alone with a book - with pain, fear and hope.

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