I have made more than just memories with you
Black, white and grey
Summer evenings or winter mornings 
Days spent in backbreaking toil over papers and presentations
Nights drowned in a flood of 3 AM thoughts
It’s you who’s kept me going… 

I wonder what’s so magical about your aroma 
The faintly bitter but nauseating smell of freshly ground beans
I love the way you make swirling designs in the milk and cream
You’re extraordinary in the everyday, the unique amidst the usual… 
That queer ability to transform 
Meaningless conversation into interesting twists
Faithful indeed you have been
A best friend of sorts,  my comrade in arms…

You have seen me slog over heaps of notes
Laugh out loud over the silliest of jokes
And cry my eyes out over a heartbreak 
Surreptitiously you paved your way into my life
Now more precious than lover or spouse you have become
An addiction I have grown to pride 

Nostalgia peeps in
I gather glimpses of moments that will never repeat themselves 
And smile to myself 
Shivering under a pink hoodie…
How Riya and I had come to be best friends
Brought together by our mutual love for “coffee “
The cup I accidentally spilled on my professor’s desk
As he leafed through my project
And the one laden with ice cream I had on my first date 
Countless paper cups to keep us awake 
Through ultra long lectures at the university
And that occasional treat at Starbucks or Barista …
Roasted and blended to perfection, 
There’s so much and more to you – a simple mug of ground beans

You have heard me wonder out loud
“Should I die or make myself a cup of coffee? “
Seen me expend emotions in words 
Helped me knit the best of poetry
You have tasted the salt of my tears
And yet invaded my grief armed in bitter-sweet taste 
With a ferocity and possession unlike anyone else
Gluing together the broken pieces
In gulps of a plain black fluid …

Today as I brew myself yet another cup
Blowing my nose into an already soggy handkerchief 
I see the bottle is almost empty
And lost in a mindless reverie, unweaving thoughts
I know you flavor all shades of my life
Linking past,  present and future in a common thread
As I beat in the sugar and spice
I know you are both fire and ice 

And as I revive a little over a steaming mug of hot strong love
I realize why CCD says
“A lot can happen over coffee! “

©® Inara 


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