The original title in Arabic that was used by Sinan Antoon is Whadaha Shajarat al-Rumman and translated into English means The Lone Pomegranate Tree. It is one symbol used in the novel, which gains much attention during the whole plot and which is the centre of the story, to which it is always referred back. As it is the centre of the book, it is also the centre of the mghaysil in which the tree is located in the middle of the courtyard. Jawad’s father works in the mghaysil that is an institution in which corpses are washed for religious reasons.
In Islamic symbolism the Pomegranate tree is religious symbol for the tree of paradise, which should ease the journey of the dead person. Jawad’s father said “that they lessen the pain of the grave” (Antoon 65). Washing corpses, not only according to his father, is a highly…show more content… His father prays five times a day, he of course needs to be highly religious in his mghaysil, which is a highly religious place and institution for the bereaved of the dead. The piety of his father is once again highlighted and underlined by his sudden death during his daily routine of praying. His father’s heart stopped beating and Jawad’s mother had “realized that his weak heart had given out after such a long journey and that he would never wake up again” (Antoon 63). Simultaneously, the city was bombed. His father is a sublime being for Jawad’s mother, since he is the head of the family, who worked everyday to nourishes his family and who prayed everyday to show his faith in God.
Jawad, after the death of his brother and father, often overindulge in daydreams and suffers nightmares. His dreams show that he is negatively affected by Hussein’s dictatorship and the American invasion that caused war in Iraq. He might not talk about his fears and mentions it with the help of subtext or very brief descriptions as in chapter fifteen. In this chapter Jawad sees an execution on television, in