The short story is named “Reconciliation” and is written by Polly Clark. The story takes place in an office and the main character is the narrator and Vernon and Janny are two other important characters. ”I’m wearing the clothes I slept in. It saved me 20 minutes this morning and meant I could sleep a little longer. My outfit is a skirt and lycra top so there’s no creasing, so who would know? ” The narrator in the text is a woman, who probably is in her midlife or a bit younger.
She tries to present herself as a completely normal person when it comes to her appearance, but the things she thinks about and her way of handling things, makes her look like she has some smaller mental issues. This can be caused because she is loosing her husband whom she wants to stay with. She is not willing to give up on their relationship and marriage and it seems like she is in a state of sorrow which makes her act this way. She tries hard to present herself as normal and tries to show Vernon how much she is willing to do for their relationship.
She has been used to having her husband and being with him, so if he is gone, she does not know what to do with herself and the things around her. She does not have a very high self-esteem and sees herself as far from perfect. This lack of self-esteem can also explain the fright, which she feels when it comes to loosing her husband, because if he does not want him who would then have her with all her faults. So she is scared of loosing her normal life and the things, which she is used to. “His name is Vernon. He looks like a turtle.
More specifically he looks like a turtle without a carapace which gives him a rather exposed and nervous air. When he turns his head his neck stretches and crinkles like a rhino in latex. I bite my lip as I reached the desk. I try to smile. ” When you first are introduced to the narrator’s husband she gives a description of him. In her description she says that he looks like a turtle without a carapace, which makes it sound like he is vulnerable. But the only feeling you get of a deeper connection between the two in the presentation is her attempt of a smile.
Throughout the text it does not feel like they have a deep connection like the bond between a husband and a wife. Their relationship is torn and it is caused by an affair the husband, who is named Vernon, has had. The fact that she is telling him about some onions she has grown, which is a lie, also tells that Vernon has not been home in some time because else way he would have seen this. However Vernon do want to reconcile with his wife, but the narrator is not certain if she is ready to do it.
The reconciliation means the ending of the marriage, which the narrator is not ready for, which explains her attempts to become closer with Vernon. In a way she can be seen like the number 22. 49 because of the obsession she has with it. It is like she is narrowly missing in on being a 22. 48, which represents Vernon and Janny, who is Vernon’s lover. She wants to be Janny and she wants to be 22. 48 because she wants to stay with her husband and wants to be Janny because Janny gets the love from Vernon, which was directed towards the narrator prior the adultery.
Also her frantic search for the partner of the figure 22. 49 can be explain in her own search for a possible hope that there is someone out there besides Vernon, because she is uncertain if she feels attached to him because of their prior life together and the habit or if she truly wants to stay with him, when she does not fit him entirely. “He stands, light rocketing of him. I don’t say this lightly (how can these people stand the merciless strip lights? ), he really is vast in the scraps of their shadows. His thick shoulders shift like branches in gale” There is used a lot of imagery in this text.
An example can be seen in the quotation above. It is told that Vernon’s shoulders shift like branches in gale, which means that they are shifting like branches on a tree does in a storm. This gives the reader a picture of a somewhat powerful man who somehow is not in control of his reactions and actions. The numbers on the pages, which are the pages where the narrator searches for pairs, are also animated to a certain level. The figures which are unreconciled are mentioned to be spinsterish, but it is not possible for a number to have outgrown its marriage age, because numbers do not get married.
So the numbers is in some ways a metaphor for the things going on in the triangle that is formed between the narrator, Vernon and Janny. The use of imageries and metaphors in the text paints a picture for the reader to see and understand. The main theme in this text is the consequences of adultery and the hard way in to reconciliation between two persons. It is also about looking the facts in the eyes and end things if they still exist on the base that you are afraid to change things and discover something else.