pearls around the neck • 181
She walked through the streets of the village, swinging her hips to the rhythm of drums that only she
Every day, she would ruin ten families on average because her butt was like a magnet that all men felt
compelled to follow.
Coming home, she would close the door, leaving behind many curious men clinging to the bars of her
After a long time, she would lean out, pen and paper in hand, assessing how many had surrendered to
her renowned charms. But she knew not everyone succumbed.
One of the many interested parties had decided to break the spell and had sworn never to follow this
butt again. This butt that had once caused an immediate split in his family.
As for her, she held the hope of seeing him, still dangling from her windows, or from any part of her
She had grown used to his presence and not having him created in her emptiness difficult to bear.
The man had abandoned everything for her.
Never had they spoken, but once a day she leaned out and saw him, a look to reassure that here they
were, one for each other.
The others were just fillers; she couldn’t care less about the others. Only he mattered: “Destroyed
One day she thought she should let him in, after several years of repudiation. This was the day he had
decided never to come back.
As years drifted by, the drums of Ruin slowly softened and faded away, and when passing through
town only very few would pay attention to her.
Sobbing, she walked through the streets, and for that reason, the magnet she carried faded and lost its
During one of her strolls, Ruin crossed the one that would soon become her successor. The girl had
no understanding of drums or rhythms, but she knew how to place some flowers in her cleavage. All
wanted to water the flowers. And here they were, running with small watering cans, determined not to
let the flowers wither.
That is how the maiden with the flowers took over; every man in town ran after her like a fool.
The body of Ruin had to pay the bills of all these years and “Destroyed Jones” himself revealed it to her.
He knocked at her door when there was not one single contender left and he rested when finally he saw
she was almost as ruined as he was.
Author: Amalia Saporiti Amorim, Spain, 2010.
English translators: Catherine Beeckman and Susan Surrat
Illustration: Catherine Beeckman