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Beasts in Ravage
by Hareendran Kallinkeel

He lashes out with a paw, hind legs firm on the ground, mane quivering, and roars. A flock of migratory birds takes to the sky.

She strikes, claws extended, and growls, tail flailing. A herd of zebras gallops away, stomping the ground.

A fly squats on the bloody chunk of a deer’s flesh that lies between them, smeared with granules of soil like dust on tree leaves in summer. 

The lion sniffs the meat, the lioness growls again, baring her fangs. He sneaks his tail between his legs and departs.

“Turn off the stupid TV.”

“You can’t stand it ‘cause it projects a poor image of males, right?”

“Wrong. I’m just hungry. Sounds like females don’t understand subtle hints.”

“What do you mean?”

“You saw the apparent; the lion retreating.”

“What’s not the obvious?”

“It’s there, baby.”


“What did you cook for dinner tonight? I’m starved.”

“Let’s see what happens.”

“The lion will come back.”

“He’s surrendered the meat to her. What’s there to come back to?”

“You know what made him quit?”

“Aggressive femininity.”

“Nope. Prospect of courtship. You see, he’s obliged her. I’ll fetch us dinner.” He sneaks into the kitchen.