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December 20, 2018 / barton smock

AFTER THE DEATH OF SHOSTAKOVICH PÈRE, a memoir by Maya Sonenberg, reviewed by Barton Smock

Heavy Feather Review


After the Death of Shostakovich Père, by Maya Sonenberg. PANK Books, May 2018. 48 pages. $12.00, paper.

“I wish you could hear the bells”

We are many and we sit in a circle. I light a match for us to pass around. Inquiry is distraction’s lover. Our fathers have died, or will. We have read Maya Sonenberg’s After the Death of Shostakovich Père,a dark music of spiritual interruptions, a predictive diary, an inherited memoir. The match goes out in someone’s holding. Our memories, they shorten, separately. Whose childhood does a child have?

“the killing tells a kind of story”

In four movements, Prelude / Danse Fantastique / Nocturne / Finale, Maya Sonenberg, while both carrying the transportive death of her father and embodying the simultaneous transformations of spy and scholar, acknowledges and interrogates the differing accounts of all sorts of passage, be it the tunneling…

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