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“Stitch” by Terry Dowling


Stitch is an eye catching short story by Terry Dowling. The story is set in a home back ground of aunt Inga who is described as Bella’s Aunt and her husband. It quite a lovely old couple where ,that besides of their old age they are happy to be together and even celebrate their birthdays as a sign of there happy moments together. Bella Dillon appears as the major character in this story since he is the major victim of all these mysteries that we can see in the story. While the author does not tell as mach about the backgrounds of the characters Bella appears to be a young lady, of age and humble. The story tells as that her parents are long dead a thing that hurts Bella when her aunt Inga and Uncle Sal mentions something concerning her parents. General story comprises of few characters who are all related. The active characters and the most important ones are Bella Dillon, Aunt Inga and Uncle Sal.

There are different issues that have been raised in the story and sounds mysteriously affecting the characters in the story. Especially the major character Bella seems to be in a total nightmare with issues around her. Indeed the intriguing puzzles in the story sound to have highly affected Bella to an extent of ruined her happiness in life. Some of these mysteries them has shown themselves in the story are as follows bellow.


So far in the story fear is one of thrilling issues that have proven to be disturbing and highly affecting lives of characters in the story. This has appeared as the climax of every happening in the story. In our general life experience we often encounter things that appear to bring fear in our day to day lives. It brings a dilemma in our lives, that most of the time we fail to handle any thing in life. Just like Bella and Uncle Sal who appear to be victims of fear in the story many of us in the real life we are victims of fear. A person becomes a victim of fear due to different things that has may be happened in his/her life.There are things that are so fearful whenever they happen. When a person comes across a mysterious thing like being molested physically or psychologically he or she is likely to suffer state of fear that may permanently change- his life to a night mere of fear and lack of self confidence. Fear is psychological issue since it affects the mind of the victim.

In this story some episodes are brought up showing the major character Bella Dillon being a victim of fear. There is where the author of this narrative has talked on how the picture in Aunt Ingas bathroom wall has brought fear in Bella’s mind since she was a child to an adult still having the same fear. This tells as that some times fear can affect the whole live of a person if nothing is done to erase its cause from the mind of the victim. This lady is shown to have great fear to the mysterious man in the picture referred to as Mr. Stitch. Bella considers the message reflected in the picture to be intimidating to the children.

Just as I said earlier, in order to eradicate a mystery of fear in our life we need to do some thing that is likely to make as forget about all things that we encountered bringing fear in our lives. When a thing like this monument that was causing fear to Bella is removed in her sight or she is educated about the positive way of interpreting it , the fear may be erased from her mind. Consequences of fear are that fear may cause depression or distress to a victims mind for a long period of time.

Death of the Beloved Ones

When a person encounters something like death of one or many of his/her beloved people he/she becomes psychologically disturbed. These psychological disturbances may cause mental injuries to the victims of the circumstances. The best example is shown in the story where Belle Dillon is reminded about her mother who is long dead by Aunt Inga through showing her the picture of her dear mother who is no longer there to take care for her. She immediately develops a dislike to her talk and tries to avoid by introducing something else different from the matter concerning her mother. As we can see in the story Aunt Inga telling Bella that, ”This picture of your mom was always my favorite,” we can see that the moment Bella hears of it she develops an familiar mood and tries all she can to change the topic by avoiding her aunt. The author tells us that, ” Bella ignored the mention of her mother, concentrated instead on what Uncle Sal was doing.” This is a clear indication of showing that she was much affected by her parent’s death and it was hard for her to accept that reality. She also becomes offset when her uncle tries to tell her about her parents. She totally objects the idea of hearing about her parent at all cost.

When a person encounters such a mysterious thing like death of the beloved people, may be a partner in marriage, parents or relatives and friends its good and of grater importance to allow it pass. Accepting that it has happened and its irreversible in any way may help one to bear the condition if Bella could have accepted it she could be having any problem in listening to there explanations (Dowling, 4).

Acceptance of Reality

Acceptance of reality in one way or the other becomes a total mystery in the story as explained by the conducts of Bella the major character in the story. She has by all means denied accepting the truth which is the main cause of her mysterious life disturbance. When we encounter any thing bad or good in our lives many of us do not like accepting it the way it has happened.By failing to accept the truth of life happenings like so did Bella, we definitely ruin our tender lives by making them nightmares.


Life is a cross-section of good and bad things. In no way can some live a life without bad things happening now and then.Some happen in order to strengthen us and make us ready for our daily life encounters. This is the reason as to why we should fight to forget the bad things that we have faced in the past as a way of eradicating distresses and unbearable conditions in life.

Works Cited

Dowling, Terry. Stitch. Australian SF: Eidolon, 2002


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