The Lost Head & The Bird



1

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, frantically… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. An obsessive lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had warned her that it would happen. And there had been other signs too. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. But with him it was different. He would try to tear the flesh off her breasts and when he did not manage he would smile and say I just wanted a piece of you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip the money beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over from the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to take photographs of her. He had said that he wanted to take photographs of all the wonderful and vicious things that happened along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent,she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap because it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



2

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, frantically… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. An obsessive lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had warned her that it would happen. And there had been other signs too. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. But with him it was different. He would try to tear the flesh off her breasts and when he did not manage he would smile and say I just wanted a piece of you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip the money beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over through the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap because it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



3

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had warned her that it would happen. And there had been other signs too. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. But with him it was different. He would try to tear the flesh off her breasts and when he did not manage he would smile and say I just wanted a piece of you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip the money beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over through the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap because it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



4

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. And there had been other signs too. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. But with him it was different. He would try to tear the flesh off her breasts and when he did not manage he would smile and say I just wanted a piece of you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip the money beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over through the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap because it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



5

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. But she had continued to ignore him. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. But with him it was different. He would try to tear the flesh off her breasts and when he did not manage he would smile and say I just wanted a piece of you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip the money beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over through the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap because it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



6

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. But she had continued to ignore him. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. But with him it was different. He would try to tear the flesh off her breasts and when he did not manage he would smile and say I just wanted to be with you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip a gift beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over through the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap because it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



7

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. But she had continued to ignore him. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. But with him it was different. He would try to tear the flesh off her breasts and when he did not manage he would smile and say I just wanted to be with you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip a gift beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over through the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap even though it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



8

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. But she had continued to ignore him. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. And with him it was no different. He would try to tear the flesh off her breasts and when he did not manage he would smile and say I just wanted to be with you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip a gift beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over through the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap even though it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



9

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. But she had continued to ignore him. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. And with him it was no different. He would try to bite the skin on her breasts and whenever she flinched a little he would smile and say I just wanted to be with you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip a gift beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer had come over through the nearby city of Chennai. He had heard about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap even though it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



10

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had stolen it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. But she had continued to ignore him. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. And with him it was no different. He would try to bite the skin on her breasts and whenever she flinched a little he would smile and say I just wanted to be with you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip a gift beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer happened to pass through the nearby city of Chennai. He had been told about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap even though it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixed but she had continued to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.



11

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had borrowed it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. But she had continued to ignore him. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. And with him it was no different. He would try to bite the skin on her breasts and whenever she flinched a little he would smile and say I just wanted to be with you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip a gift beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer happened to pass through the nearby city of Chennai. He had been told about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap even though it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixedbecause she had forgotten to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness put her arms around Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.




11

The sound of the cage crashing to the ground tore through the house. The crow had escaped. A light came on, and on the bed Madhu tottered from left to right, trying to find her head. Her hands clasped at the smooth top of her torso, her fingers feeling for any trace of a stump of her head, before falling still for a moment and then again repeating the motion, surprisingly… Even now she kept forgetting that she did not have a head. It had already been a year. A distraught lover had borrowed it while she had fallen asleep to the rumble of the waves outside. She should have seen it coming. The fortune-teller had advised her that it would happen. But she had continued to ignore him. Every time her lover made love to her he bit her really hard. It wasn’t something unusual for a man to do. And with him it was no different. He would try to bite the skin on her breasts and whenever she flinched a little he would smile and say I just wanted to be with you so that I wouldn’t miss you when I leave, and then he would slip a gift beside her.

It was getting hot and sweaty. The wind had strangely stopped blowing in the evening and with it the sea had died that night. Madhu rubbed the sweat off her body. The day had been long and boring. An idiot of a photographer happened to pass through the nearby city of Chennai. He had been told about this woman who had lost her head and he wanted to get to know her story. He had said that he wanted to know of all the wonderful and vicious things that existed along the Indian coastline; and that he had started to make his way through Tamil Nadu. Why on Earth would anybody waste his time on something like this? Any way he had a strange accent, she thought. She had started to feel her way through the living room. The tottering had now turned into a dance. If only the asshole had let me keep at least my cerebellum… Now I will have to buy myself a whole new head. She had been saving money to buy a new head from the fortune-teller, but for now she had to make do with the ear that her sister had loaned to her which she had attached to the front of her right shoulder, the more auspicious side. She missed the ordinary things: Looking at herself in the mirror, wearing make up, combing her hair, sticking her head out of the water when in the sea… You know!!! The usual…

She needed to hurry. The pill was starting to get slippery in her moist hands. A couple of months ago she bought the bird cheap even though it came with a terribly loud and supposedly temporary cough that had not yet been fixedbecause she had forgotten to persist. From the familiar edge at the end of the wall she realized that she had forgotten to shut the window. She already knew that the cage had fallen. There was a string tied to it that had its other end around the big toe of her right foot while she slept. She picked up the cage and shook it hoping to feel a movement inside, but only the open door rattled wildly inside the frame. Loneliness crept upon Madhu from behind as she stood with the empty cage. Damn! I’ll have to buy myself a new parrot from the fortune-teller tomorrow.