Squawk! There was Lalli derailing again!

     “Amma!” came a wail from the gate. “Amma-oh!”

     “Ravi, send that beggar away!” cried his mother from the back verandah, where she was chatting with Tapi. “He has been coming here every day for the past week, and it’s time he found another house to beg from!” Paati explained to Tapi.

     Mridu and Meena followed Ravi out. The beggar was already in the garden, making himself quite at home. He had spread his upper cloth under the neem tree, and was leaning against its trunk, apparently prepared to take a little snooze while he waited for the alms to appear. “Go away!” said Ravi sternly. “My Paati says it’s time you found another house to beg from!”

     The beggar opened his eyes very wide and gazed at each of the children one by one. “The ladies of this house,” he said, at last, in a voice choked with feeling, “are very kind souls. I have kept my body and soul together on their generosity for a whole week. I cannot believe that they would turn me away.” He raised his voice. “Amma! Amma-oh!” Sad his wail might be, but it certainly wasn’t feeble. It began in a deep, strong rumble somewhere in his withered belly, and came booming out of his mouth, with its few remaining teeth stained brown with betel-chewing.
Again they heard a loud, harsh noise. It was Lalli going off-pitch in the violin again. Another sound came next, "Amma, Amma-oh" from the gate. Ravi's mother, who also heard the sound, understood it was the beggar who had come for alms and shouted to Ravi to send the beggar away. Since she was chatting with Tapi, she asked Ravi to tell the beggar. Paati explained to Tapi that the beggar had been coming there daily for one week, and he had to choose some other house from now on.
Ravi went out to see the beggar while Mridu and Meena followed him. The beggar was already making himself comfortable in the garden, and he had no ideas of returning. He was spreading his upper cloth under the neem tree and prepared his place for a short nap, while the house members brought him his food. Ravi told him to go away in a strict tone. He added that his Paati told him it was time to find another house to beg.
The beggar cried "Amma! Amma-oh!"
The beggar opened his eyes wide and stared at the three children one by one. His voice was blocked with sadness; he said the ladies of that house were very kind-hearted who showed him mercy and fed him food for one whole week which kept him alive. He said he could not believe that they would send him back without food. Then he raised his voice so that the elders inside the home could also hear. He was sad, but his voice was not meek. The voice came from within his dry and hungered stomach, a deep and echoing sound through the few remaining teeth that had become brown due chewing betel leaves. He screamed "Amma, amma-oh"!
Meanings of difficult words:
squawka loud, harsh noise
a short sleep
making himself quite at homemaking himself comfortable, as if it was his home
withereddry, wrinkled due to age
kept my body and soul togethermanaged to stay alive
National Council of Educational Research and Training (2007). Honeycomb. A Gift of Chappals - Vasantha Surya (pp. 18-32). Published at the Publication Division by the Secretary, National Council of Educational Research and Training, Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi.