Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Two-Faced Baby

On March 11, 2008 a baby girl was born with two faces in India. Since then, people in her rural village have been singing and dancing — offering money and asking for her blessings. The baby is seen as an incarnation of a Hindu Goddess and people make offerings and ask for the baby's blessing.

The baby, Lali, has a rare condition known as craniofacial duplication, where a single head has two faces. Except for her ears, all of Lali's facial features are duplicated — she has two noses, two pairs of lips and two pairs of eyes.

"My daughter is fine — like any other child," said the baby’s father, Vinod Singh, a poor 23 year old farm worker.

Lali’s parents live in the dusty village of Saini Sunpura, 25 miles east of India’s capital New Delhi. When she left the hospital, eight hours after being born many of the people of the village waited outside, Sabir Ali, the director of Saifi Hospital said.

"She drinks milk from her two mouths and opens and shuts all the four eyes at one time," Ali said.

Rural India is deeply superstitious and people believe the baby is a return of the Hindu goddess of valor, Durga, a fiery deity usually illustrated with three eyes and many arms.

Up to 100 people have been visiting Lali at her home every day to touch her feet out of respect, offer money and receive blessings her mother told reporters.

Lali's parents were married in February 2007. Lali is their first child.

Singh said he took his daughter to a hospital in New Delhi where doctors suggested a CT scan to determine whether her internal organs were normal, but Singh said he felt it was unnecessary.

Research info gathered at: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/

Now, here's one of my poems with four eyes too:

Nuts, Said The Black Suit

Imagine! A dream of summer & self-doubt galloping by bareback
on a horse. A man naked except for his ripe courage. Your first
necklace of raisins. The tiny tinbox of nothing you hide under
the sink. Red socks as an option. A singing tornado. The
elderly couple left to dangle off a cliff. Full of foolish
French windows. Empty suitcases or suit of
clothes. Wind-up rabbits or hare. An
all-male audience moonlighting as
museum goers. Dollars stuck
between a G-string.
sunspots. They pause
for tea. Or sometimes there’s
window boxes of red geraniums in
the viewfinder. A disco with its flashing
lights. A bowling alley that stays open all-night.
Her satin slippers. My white towel draped across one
shoulder. A fat song that allows us to trim away any
unnecessary words. A riddle about a journey. A
smell that fills the room like perfume. White
caps of an ocean. A yellow ribbon. But
more often than not, it’s just our
voyeur neighbor with those
ridiculous binoculars as
he watches from his
balcony next door.

Poem first published at: http://www.hamiltonstone.org/
Copyright 2008 by Maurice Oliver. All Rights Reserved.


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