My latest book is The One Who Swam With The Fishes.

"A mesmerizing account of the well-known story of Matsyagandha ... and her transformation from fisherman’s daughter to Satyavati, Santanu’s royal consort and the Mother/Progenitor of the Kuru clan." - Hindustan Times

"Themes of fate, morality and power overlay a subtle and essential feminism to make this lyrical book a must-read. If this is Madhavan’s first book in the Girls from the Mahabharata series, there is much to look forward to in the months to come." - Open Magazine

"A gleeful dollop of Blytonian magic ... Reddy Madhavan is also able to tackle some fairly sensitive subjects such as identity, the love of and karmic ties with parents, adoption, the first sexual encounter, loneliness, and my favourite, feminist rage." - Scroll

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3 July 2014

for william

who scratches
who has a black spot on his head
and another deeper, by his tail
who is soft and full
of purrs and kitten dreams
who is warrior with crooked whiskers
who is the bane of the older cat
dignified, paddy pawed older cat

somewhere on the internet
i read this about kittens
you have a small carnivore.”
william is a carnivore
he is like a raptor,
if you gave him flesh to tear
he would tear it
he attacks his kitten food
and kills it by shaking his head,
he jumps on high tables where the cat’s food is
and sticks his nose in
he will have all the food.

william has half a black nose
and a sliver of sandpaper tongue
who will bite the hand that feeds him
only because it looks like a toy
who hides inside the sofa and emerges
surprise! Here I am!
who does not yet have cat dignity
and so, is always delighted to see me
he shows this by biting my foot

we love him best when he is sleepy
rorschach back to the world
for then he is tame kitten, sweet kitten
not the wild animal that beats
sinew by sinew, drop by drop
in his aching, furry, bestial flesh.


  1. He looks like such a darling :) Sweet poem about that sweet and ferocious little tiger!

  2. I'm not much of a cat person, but that is one adorable kitten. :)

  3. Absolutely adorable. The words fit the kitten like magic on its fur:)


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