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by Greeshma Somashekar, MS1

when amma asks if I’ve taken my vitamin D today, twice / geena on the phone from Taiwan remembering the way we used to lie on each other’s bellies inventing futures without shame / watching bad television because one of the characters looks like me / hesaru bele dosa / thinking of farhan and how he always ends stories with “do you ever feel that way?” / the way alemar listens to me cry without giving me advice or a tissue / compiling this list in the corner of an emptying library / admitting that I’m not okay: sometimes, often / the little book on curanderismo an old poet-friend sent me from the bookstore that taught me to speak / my 12 year old sister asking if I’ll braid her hair every weekend / Doc McStuffins / when the first person I saw during clinical week cried for 20 minutes after years of holding it together because she read pain on my face and somehow felt less alone / appa watching Zootopia and laughing so hard he drowns out the dialogue / playing frisbee at the park filled with giggling immigrant children behind our old apartment complex / participating in the birth of a baby who is loved and supported by their community / leafing through the recipe book from dodavva and testing the ingredients, slowly, in Kannada / rawness / realness / weirdness / softness / running until my knees redden and falter / being alone with my feelings / being with people with my feelings / feeling you trace the edges of my experience and inviting you all the way in / welcome