Manisha Bharadia is a third-year medical student at the University of Alberta.Manisha Bharadia


If you watch me in the morning

You can see how my heart pulls

Myofibrils tensing and releasing

To the beat of my Bapuji’s tabla

 

If you watch me make my coffee

You can count how many teaspoons of cinnamon

Will be mixed in with the beans

My father’s secret recipe

 

The earthy, robust powder

Transports me into my Ba’s home

Where I sit down at the table for our afternoon chai

Wrist still cherry red from the

 

Flip

Flip

Flip

 

Ba effortlessly rolls the atta

into perfectly planned circles

While I clumsily

 

Flip

Flip

Flip

 

Hoping I haven’t pressed too hard as to dissuade

The perfect ballooning

 

Then Ba will sit at the table

Tell me of how her friends called her to visit

But she took the bus to pay her bill

How she started a new project

Knitting yet another afghan

Eiffel Towers this time she says with a smile

holding up her pastel green creation as proof

 

The trip was short today

I ponder as my empty mug stares back at me

The aroma of my home

Just an aftertaste on my tongue

 

Myofibrils tense and release again

This time to the tick of the hospital clock

 

Tick

Tock

Tick

Tock

 

I sway

Returning to my mechanistic day

 

Until tomorrow

More cinnamon this time