On the antique shelf over the counter
The old radio crackles
Polished with time
Its wooden knobs shine
The sound of the veena is muffled
As the daily bhajan plays in the back ground
Voices are heard
Of old men chatting
As they gather outside
The fragrance of freshly roasted coffee
Fills the morning air
Above, in the hallway, and old fan creeks
As it churns the roof to bring air to the life below
On the walls beside, frills of gold foil sways and hums
As it lies garlanded on a photograph of a turbaned old man
In a dingy corner! White and hissing!
The boiler lets out steam!
The vested master, moth-eaten and off white
Brews and mixes cheerfully
Raising his hands effortlessly
As he fills the brass cups and tumblers
With fresh milk, coffee and foam!
Midst the aroma of these myriad experiences
As I stand here and sip into the sparkling foam
Ah! What more can I say of this perfect South Indian coffee!