Originally written in Balochi by: Sharaf Shad
In English translated by: Uzair Mehr
One day I just left the hospital and headed home. I was sitting in
the serving room waiting for my wife to serve the food so I could eat.
Suddenly, I heard the sound of a bike stopping outside my home and a
rapid footfall in front of the cement steps. A raised voice asked my
“Is Mr. Doctor here?’’
I recognized the voice. It was Ali. The door opened after a while, and
the short and fat Ali came inside.
“Mr. Doctor! Let’s go! My wife is ailing. You need to see her”
“I am eat….”
“I will provide food for you there”, he said and took my bag of
medicine from the table.
Ali walked in front of me. He was a friend of mine. I didn’t say
anything and I just followed him. He informed me that his wife was
experiencing pregnancy pain.
On reaching his house, I examined her. After my advice, she was
willing to get an injection, so I gave her the shot.
I sat in the guest room. After a short span of time, she had the baby.
It wasn’t so late that the door to the room abruptly opened. Ali came
inside. His face was red from happiness.
“Sir, I am blessed with a baby boy”.
“Congratulations to you too”. His accent was overflowing with sweetness.
I prescribed some syrups and tablets for the patient to be purchased
He conveyed me to my home. After taking me home, he put his hand in
his pocket. I happily stopped him from paying.
“Doctor! No way, you cannot go bereft”.
“Oh come on. Leave this and give us a picnic as treat”.
“There will be an abundance of picnics for you!”
Ali joyfully left the room.
A couple of years passed. One night, Ali was suffering from pain. I
was awakened at mid night. When I approached his house, he was
groaning like a nightingale. His son was standing over him and looking
at his father with stunned eyes.
I consoled him. After the treatment, Ali fell asleep. As I was about
to leave, Ali’s son asked,
“Doctor, will my father recuperate?”
“Your father will definitely heal. Don’t obsess over such thoughts”.
I patted his cheek and left.
On the other day, Ali came to me with his bike. He gave me the
remuneration of treatment.
He was accompanied by his son.
“What’s the name of your son Ali? He was overwhelmingly anxious for
you last night”. I smiled.
“Sabzal Khan, I named him after my father”.
“Mash Allah, Great”.
“When he saw you treating me the previous night, he said,” I also want
to be a doctor”.
I laughed loudly and looked towards Sabzal who was bashfully hiding
behind his father.
“May Allah Almighty turn his dream into reality”.
Ali let me go, saying Amen.
It was not more than two years later Ali came to the hospital with his
son, Sabzal, who was suffering from a high fever.
Ali was worried. I checked his fever with a thermometer. Before
prescribing something, I asked him,
“In which class are you studying”?
“Will you recognize your name if I write it on the prescription?”
“Of course!’’ He puffed up his chest with pride.
I wrote Doctor Sabzal Khan Baloch on the prescription and prescribed
the medicines below.
Both father and son’s faces were glowing. They left the hospital in
One day in the morning when I was getting ready to go to the hospital,
Ali came to my house and said to me,
“We need to leave right away. “ My son is having difficulty breathing!”
When I got there, he was struggling to breathe. I treated him but his
condition didn’t ameliorate.
Hence I said to Ali,
“There is no facility available here. You need to bring your son to
the major hospital in the city”.
Ali arranged for a car and went to the city. After two or three days,
word spread that Ali’s son passed away in the hospital.
Ali returned home empty-handed.
I was extremely dejected.
After a few days, the childhood and untimely death of Sabzal as if
left a haze and dust in the environment of our small village.
Then, in the blowing wind of daily movements, everything was restored
to normal. Life was moving at its own pace.
One day, I saw Ali riding his bike. After seeing me, he stopped and
greeted me. After greeting I asked,
“Hey Ali, what’s this? I indicated the object in his lap which was
wrapped in an old newspaper.
“It is a gravestone sir!” Ali tried to appear to be cheerful, then
“It is Sabzal’s gravestone”, Ali said, dejectedly unwrapping the gravestone.
After unwrapping the papers, he showed the gravestone to me.
The inscription read:
Name: Sabzal Khan Baloch
Age: Eight years and six months
After looking the gravestone, I looked toward Ali.
Two hail stone tears were dribbling from his eyes to his cheeks.