An hourglass is an interesting piece to tell you the time. You can see how much time has passed and how much time is left. The past, the present and the future are shown at the same moment. Yet, you cannot know if the amount of sand that is still in the upper part will actually be there for you, maybe the hourglass is turned before it runs out and thus, the past comes back. The hourglass is concrete, on the one hand; on the other, it is the incorporation of time itself, never-ending and thus, volatile. For humans, life is a race against the clock. The sand is slowly tripping and just by looking in the mirror, we can see that another day, another week, another year has passed without us noticing.
In Kieran Goddard’s debut novel “Hourglass”, a man is pondering about love. The whole novel is a stream of consciousness addressed to the man he loved in the past and whom he will love forever. They only had a brief time together and their love has no future. It is like sand, that cannot be stopped from falling from one glass into the other, it is just running through the narrator’s fingers. He can feel it and yet not stop it from vanishing.
There is not real plot, it is a meditation on life, a yearning for love, the longing for bonding with other people which never works. A dense and focussed narration just like looking through a keyhole and observing an extract of life.
Despite the poetic language and strong dark emotion, the novel did not really touch me. Maybe it was the lack of actual plot that I missed, somehow the text seems to be more like an extended poem rather than a novella.