Thursday, September 15, 2011

"The Smell of a Baby"

Asōka Colombagē

The mother has two sons. One is at college. The other has committed a treasonous act--he has impregnated his girl friend. “Bitch,” the mother calls her. “I’ll kill her.” They view the girl as having entrapped her son., although he says he brought it on himself.

Fast forward. The baby and Rani, the girl friend, have arrived. Everyone is enamored of the baby and Rani has fit perfectly into the household. The whole house smells of the baby.

About the Author: Asōka Colombagē is a Sri Lankan who writes shorts stories and plays in Sinhala only. His characteristic work offers perceptive glimpses of Sinhala social, and especially domestic, life. The translation is by Hema Gunatilaka.

Short Story International #30. Sylvia Tankel, Ed. February 1982, pp. 113-120.

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