Why I love Salman Rushdie

In the current New Yorker magazine, there’s a Salman Rushdie story titled In The South, which opens like this:

“The day that Junior fell down began like any other day: the explosion of heat rippling the air, the trumpeting sunlight, the traffic’s tidal surges, the prayer chants in the distance, the cheap film music rising from the floor below, the loud pelvic thrusts of an “item number” dancing across a neighbor’s TV, a child’s cry, a mother’s rebuke, unexplained laughter, scarlet expectorations, bicycles, the newly plaited hair of schoolgirls, the smell of strong sweet coffee, a green wing flashing in a tree…”

What puts the knife in my heart?  That he ends the list of urban events and sounds with “…a green wing flashing in a tree.

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