•July 30, 2008 • 1 Comment

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That’s what I’m going to call my three virgins, in heaven,

In fact, I’m entitled to 72. But the sound of so many hymens rupturing will sure wake up the devils in hell. Devils, devils all around, devils with their perverted sex lives will haunt me to the grave.

A handle-bar-mustached devil is awaiting me at the entrance. He calls out:

`Arre Guide Bhai, Uzmanuddin, Adaab. What’s in your suitcase, a time bomb, eh? Come, come, let me check,’

That is Panditji, Bomb Specialist, Orissa Police. I call him the bumming specialist. `Go check your mother’s suitcase, sir,’ I tell him. Sometimes he frisks even the women! The great Pandit-of-the-hands-on-approach.

Mrs.Pandit gives him ample, immense scope to perfect his technique. `Pandit-boy will need a barrel to enter me,’ she once told me in school.

But, she’ll weep at my funeral.

My father once caught Pandit masturbating near one of the bestiality sculptures. `Keep an eye on the goats, he told us back home, `the junior Pandit is behaving very unBrahmin-like.’ No one is safe in Khajuraho, this frigid, lifeless monument to perversion.

Inside the courtyard, I bump into two girls in rustling silk sarees who smile at me. My circumcised member stands up and salutes them. Do they want me to open their silk wrappings and peek inside?

`In Khajuraho, the men always leer and the women smile,’ Father told me when they made me an official tourist guide, Uzmanuddin Guide, MA, Ph.D (Fellatio in Ancient India).

I don’t want Sania, Zubaida and Zeenat to smile at strangers. And they’ll be wearing shalwar-kameez.

Salim Bhai calls me on the mobile. `Insert the lithium cell into the device, and place it by the Gajgamini sculpture.’

Two peepul leaves fall and gently settle on my eyes. S, Z and Z should be watching me from their heavenly harems. They’ll be proud of my sacrifice.

Underneath the Gajgamini, I fumble in my pocket. The breeze in Khajuraho is like a million erotic sculptures breaking wind. I shudder. The lithium cell is missing.

Scouring the sand is futile. The courtyard has been swept clean. The cell!

It was still there when I met the Pandit. S, Z and Z, show me the way!

Did some filmy hero pick my pocket? The two devils in saree! I rush to the entrance, trip and fall. The zigzag scrawls made by a sightless broom leer at me.

Pandit looks up in my direction. I run.

Tara , the sweeper, where is the sweeper? She collects the 50 paise fee at the toilet. Mrs. Pandit is the toilet licensee (The Pandits have a nice income that way). She’ll help. But she’ll be at home now. I will have to go search for the bum specialist’s wife.

Tara! She is there, sitting inside the cubicle where she collects the 50 paise, mouth slightly open. They’ll piss in her mouth one day. I go inside, where there’s a mound of coins on the tray, heavy as Mrs. Pandit’s bum.

`I lost my watch battery near the entrance. Did you find it,’ I blurt out.

Tara takes a gunny sack marked `LOST & FOUND’ and methodically fumbles inside. She retrieves the little disc and hands it over.

As I rush outside, a coin falls from the till, rolls underneath the cubicle and follows me.

As I throw the coin back, Tara tells me, `You have been standing with a bomb near the Gajgamini.’ I feel the suitcase in my right hand turn into an iceberg, and the coin freeze in midair.

Tara smiles, with her legs slightly apart inside the saree, hands placed on the back of her head. `You can’t arouse the Gajgamini with a watch cell, Uzman. You see, she’s been sleeping in petrified lust, for centuries. Weren’t they the dark ages of my Chandella forebears?’

Her forbears sure put the darkness to good use.

The coin lands, with a tinkle, on the till, and an antique table fan whirs into life, pushing down the pallu of her Saree. My circumcised member stands up and salutes. She places her hands, softly, on it.

`Every time I feel an erect penis, pity overwhelms me. Penis is the saddest thing that God made. Open that suitcase Uzman,’ she says.

The suitcase sits on the cubicle floor with a thud. The flaps fall apart exposing the death machine inside. `Where do you place the lithium cell?’

I guide her. She leans over and gently, spits there. Her saliva clouds the steel.

Teardrops trace the contours of her face, and one finds its way down, very slowly to the parting of her lips, and stays there.

`It is the petrified hatred of centuries.’

`Blind as I am, I knew, a man will come one day, the static electricity of Gajgamini in his pubes, looking for a lost lithium cell.

You will fall in battle and your wife one day will save the temple, my Rajput husband’s clan oracle had once rightly predicted.’

`Your eyes are beautiful, Tara.’

`But I can’t see.’

`But you sweep well all the same.’

`I can feel. It was my figure they sculpted, in the dark ages.’

I step outside the lavatory complex, heave open the cesspit, and shake down the contents of the suitcase inside, the mobile phone too. Salim, how I wish you were here! Shit explodes somewhere deep within.

Tara is weeping, her hands open for me, shoulder-joints rolling outward.

`Tara, I have no foreskin,’ I whisper in her ears.

`But you guide well all the same.’

Her genitals open for me, like Peepul leaves rustling in the wind.

`Those were our couplings they sculpted on the walls. ‘

`Do you know what the ancient Sastras call me? Hasthini- girl whose secretions arouse the elephants on full moon nights. The Gajgamini is my past, devoid of flesh. I mourn her bones, as I sweep. Petrified springs melt, and swell inside me, alive as serpents.

`So where’s your Salim now?’

`In the cesspit,’ I nibble at an`Om’ tattooed on her breast.

`Where is Sania?’

`Zut’, I point my fingers at the sky like the barrel of a gun and shoot, `there she goes, clutching her virgin crotch as she dies.’

`Zubaida and Zeenat?’

`Two cute little devils have crossed over from hell and are grabbing their asses. Go make them happy, dears, God bless you, Z and Z.’

Tara rolls over and shows me her nice round bum.

Outside the closed cubicle, a tourist with obvious bladder problem knocks.

`50 paise please,’ I tell him.