“through the act of living, the discovery of oneself is made concurrently with the discovery of the world around us. . ."

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Bathroom Babel

My bathroom is a secure place

With a little window to the world.

A two-way window, to look out

And to look within.

Water runs, chuckling,

Washing away dirt; sins too.

The resident spider sprints

With a cockroach in its mouth.

A gecko peers, scrambling

As I sprinkle a little water at him.

A stage

To enact my fantasies

To practice a speech

To sing a song

To talk to my love

Or imagine making love.

Outside, a spider squats in its web

A cocoon hangs from a leaf

A Koel sings, a Kingfisher shrugs

A crow cleans its beak

And a squirrel hops up the tree.

Farther, the world waits –

Sharpening its claws

Cracking its knuckles

Gnashing its teeth –

The world waits for me.

I hide in my bathroom

Comforted by its damp coziness

Peering out at the world

Bracing to be eaten alive.

A buffer zone, a barrier

Between banalities and bitter realities

The bathroom determines

What I am, what I like to be;

And what I do not want to be.

**************** Balachandran V, Trivandrum 04.09.2008


  1. Dear Balan sir,

    I have had similar thoughts about the bathroom as an institution representing an assurance of privacy to even the lowliest of individuals at even the most crowded of places. I have a theory that, the state of maintainance of a society's public utility facilities is a measure of its civility. The poem itself merits a wider audience.


  2. Have a peek at the public comfort station at the Thampanoor Bus Stand and you will realise the depths of our civility!

  3. Dear Balan,
    First time I come across a poem on a bathroom. And just imagine, it really is the place where all poems are born! Great stuff all the way.

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