This is one of Yael Dayan's short, rather fractional, novels which ever since New Face in the Mirror have succeeded in mirroring not only the physical features but also the Zeitgeist of her new country. Now, Haim Kalinsky, sixty-five, from Warsaw, is dying in a hospital in Beer-Sheba. ""A common man...(he) had an uncommon moment once"" when he had been forced to choose one of his two sons and had sacrificed Daniel, eleven. However Daniel had escaped the smokestacks and been taken to a Kibbutz, brought up there with Yoram, his closest friend-- surrogate father, and now, years later, Daniel is across the street during the vigil of his father's death, lacking the will to cross it or the courage for a final confrontation. This Abraham and Isaac theme alternates with fitful scenes--of his father's remarriage--exodus to Israel--of his own activity in the Sinai campaign and Yoram's death (a moving one)--etc. The tone of voice occasionally lapses from the elegaic to the portentous but the book projects its schism on two levels--not only the barrier between father and son but also the transition between the old European and new, young Israeli world of which Miss Dayan has been the most representative writer.