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Namrata Dass


“You or me?” What does the two-legged demon do when he arrives at that knot in the thicket?” Sheshnag said in an accurate imitation of Mama, gracefully weaving between the hollow bamboo branches. Unsurprising, since we were acquainted from the time, I was a calf and he, merely an egg in a clutch below the dense bamboo thickets my herd visited often. “Always Me! The two-legged demon will say before killing you. So, you my gullible daughters, live by my rules or die!” He made comical sputtering noises. Failing to mimic Mama’s trumpet but eliciting a smile from me. A secret smile, lest I encouraged him further. “Rule one. Feast on the tasteless leaves and peel your trunk away from luscious fruit bounties offered by the two-legged demon. Else I shall sever your trunk!” he mocked.  My secret smiles hardly mattered anymore. He had the best source of inspiration a…