The Madwoman

The Madwoman:

The Madwoman of Chaillot has a new avatar: she is the Madwoman of South Beach, and she patrols her territory with the same energetic and determined passion as her predecessor.

Iris Cornelia Starkaugen is a homeless woman who wanders the streets of South Beach, saying nothing to passersby but handing out bits of poetry written on little pieces of paper. These are important messages that they should do well to heed, for they portend their future and, more specifically, describe the moment of their death. For this reason, she is known as the Madwoman; we know her as the new Cassandra who was condemned to tell the future but was never believed.

Some of her poetic auguries fall into the hands of a publisher who wants to make a book out of them. He thinks that her prevailing message is important for everyone to know, that the rising seas precipitated by the warming of the planet are coming faster than anybody suspected. Soon, all of Miami Beach, along with most of the eastern seabord, from Patagonia to Nova Scotia, will be underwater. It is the Earth trying to shake off her worst parasite—Man—by sending tremors, storms and inundations in the attempt to dislodge him and wipe the Earth clean.

Iris, unheeding of her own welfare, grappling with people who misunderstand her and attack her, hindered by the frailty of her own body, and ultimately, facing the coming of the tidal waves, perseveres in her attempt to save as many souls as she can. Selfless and empathic, she loves people enough to fight for their survival.


About the author

Roy Luna: Roy Luna is a retired French professor who dabbles in the arts, tinkers with music, reads heavily in fiction and history, but does not neglect biographies or science. His main efforts these days are devoted to writing a trilogy of novels based on events occurring during the years between the death of Voltaire (1778) and the French Revolution (1789-94), years rich in both enlightened human progress and dark, evil terror. Three times a week he volunteers at Dunbar Old Books, making sure orphaned books find their way to other readers. His library at home may have surpassed the 10,000 mark, and he valiantly tries to read them all… The one important thing to retain about Roy is his horror at the sins, the injustice, the atrocities, the crimes against humanity that are perpetrated and justified in the name of religion. Any belief system that condones such savagery has discarded its humanity, abandoned its compassion, and forsaken its principles of empathy, tolerance and love of one’s neighbor.


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