Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sheer Wickedness or Compassionate killing?

After completing the story “Mothers Day” I found myself pondering the question, was the killing of the cat for compassionate reasons or just sheer wickedness? The wickedness was the most outstanding reason to begin with first of all due to the wording used by the writer in the moments leading up to the killing, “And I hated the cat. I hated its thin voice and its loose sickly body. I hated its sticky fur and thin bones under the fur” Sawai page 205. The use of the word “hated” and the sheer description used by the writer emphasizes her loathing for this cat. Also the idea of wickedness is shown by the way the girl kills the cat, “…I swung it faster in big circles. Then I let it go, and saw its body, tangled and crooked flip through the air and land in a ditch” following this terrible act the writer “found a big stone” and “hurled it down on the cat.”Sawai page 205. This idea of wickedness is emphasized by the writers regret and the length of time this regret has lasted, “I’ve thought about it for two years now” and “and how do you go on from there? What do you do next you’re a person of faith.” However on the other hand the killing of the cat could also be seen as compassionate.
This compassion is harder to comprehend however the writer does hint at it as first of all if she “hated” the cat then why would she have carried it around the whole town trying to find its owner/home? Also the readers description of the cat shows slight compassion as she states “But most of all, I hated it dangling there alone, under the stars, watching me, waiting.” The use of the words “alone’ and “watching me” show pity from the girl, also the scene description could evoke a sense of pity and suggest that she could be in denial in her hatred for the cat. The killing of the cat, although horrid, could be seen as a way of putting the cat out of its misery of being alone with no family and in particular the person that is emphasized the most in the story, a mother. This is reinforced by the writer’s final statement “There’s no nation in the whole world, not a single solitary one, without mothers.” Sawai page 206.

No comments: