The Mosaic of the Broken Soul by Branka Cubrilo
One woman’s struggle through motherhood, friendship, betrayal, displacement, illness, pain, grief and loss.
SHE CALLED THE LUMP in Her breast ‘a black pearl’, She called her Mother to nurse Her in the darkest hours, She called memories of the three men She loved at different times of Her life to draw the parallels between seemingly similar situations of betrayal. Who is going to betray her, who is going to stay…?
She struggles with the meaning of life trying to find it through themes of motherhood, friendship, betrayal, displacement, illness, pain, grief and loss.
She travels to Andalucia, London, The Isle of Man, where She meets colourful characters believing that the unknown can reverse the fragmentation and change reality, believing that all the little broken selves can once again bring the broken pieces into a cohesive mosaic.
Journey of a Writer:
My first book written in English was The Mosaic of the Broken Soul, a memoir of a writer.
A memoir is an account of the personal experiences of an author. Memoir is not biography nor is it autobiography or a recount of the writer’s entire life.
A memoir portrays the author’s life experiences where the author shows personal knowledge through those experiences. A memoir isn’t a recount of the author’s entire life but it has to have a particular theme, hence the events are selected and exposed, discussed in depth as they are relative to the purpose of that particular story. An author is an observer and interpreter of the chosen events, questioning and answering what has happened, hence he/she comes to a different understanding of such events. There is a lesson in such events, the lesson that has profoundly affected or changed his/her life or the way he/she sees the world. While the author’s world has been changed, the reader is affected in a similar fashion and his/her mind is altered too.
As Anne Lamott pointed out:
“You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.”
On such a note I’d like to finish with an Excerpt fromThe Mosaic of the Broken Soul (A dinner with Sir Publisher and the Lady Irena).
Now is the right time to tell you the story of the Dishonest Man. Please, believe my every word, for I do not want you to doubt any comma or question mark I am going to impose. When I recollect this story in my mind, my dark pearls offer quiet rumours telling me where to go with the story. This story has never been told but locked in the leather suitcase and left on the dusty train station in Cadiz, down in Andalucia. My dear friend, my kind Nobleman, now you have made me open the leather suitcase left behind that summer when I believed that you could lock yourself in the leather suitcase and stay forgotten on the dusty train station forever.
He brought with him a woman of little brain. She claimed that she was well schooled and a worldly woman, she claimed she was a psychologist, and yet she acted as someone who had never travelled and never attended much school. There was too much of everything: strong and unpleasant perfume, and strong sentences, as she was trying to convince herself that she was a learned psychologist indeed. Because of it, nobody felt at ease. Her personality dominated all the time and all the people there were sitting on the edge of their chairs, and knives and forks were louder than they were supposed to be while dancing on the surprised plates.
He was the only one who pretended to enjoy being right there among delicious dishes and her peculiar sentences.
I got to know him by accident. My dearest friend trapped herself in one of my stories and wanted the world to know it.
This is how it all started.
He read the story and sent me a letter. Sweet words wrapped in flattery smelled strange, as if telling me if the smell was not right, how could he be the right one when the smell was coming from him? I read that message, but was willing to rewrite it for the sake of my story. They took my story and sold it to four different parts of the world. Then they celebrated. They took another story and sold it to the four different parts of the world and celebrated. They took nearly all of my stories and sold my stories and when they had taken them all nothing was left within me for the time being. When he learned that there were no more stories, he unplugged every connection. How brave, how brave and honest.
They ate and drank fine wines, they were telling jokes I never understood and when the feast was over they got up, extended their greasy, but cold hands and left me sitting there with an unpaid bill. The large bill was looking at me with its zeroes, which looked to me like big eyes full of wonder – are you the one who is going to pay? The woman who tried to behave as a psychologist said that she hoped I had enjoyed her company because it was a rare gift she gave to strangers. Just because of my gift of telling stories, she allowed me to treat her with dinner.
It all happened in the place where people try to make themselves very important for no known reason and where women have been angry and arrogant for generations, believing that anger means independence and arrogance is a sign of nobility.
How bizarre, how bizarre.