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Famous Bathroom Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Bathroom poems written by some of the greatest and most-well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous bathroom poems. These examples illustrate what a famous bathroom poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate).

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by Atwood, Margaret
...un,
your mouth sulky with sugar,
in your new dress with the ribbon
and the ice-cream smear,
and said to yourself in the bathroom,
I am not the favorite child.

My darling, when it comes
right down to it
and the light fails and the fog rolls in
and you're trapped in your overturned body
under a blanket or burning car,

and the red flame is seeping out of you
and igniting the tarmac beside you head
or else the floor, or else the pillow,
none of us is;
or else we all are.Read more of this...



by Dove, Rita
...Although it is night, I sit in the bathroom, waiting.
Sweat prickles behind my knees, the baby-breasts are alert.
Venetian blinds slice up the moon; the tiles quiver in pale strips.

Then they come, the three seal men with eyes as round
As dinner plates and eyelashes like sharpened tines.
They bring the scent of licorice. One sits in the washbowl,

One on the bathtub edge;...Read more of this...

by Bukowski, Charles
...hs of. I would have
loved you more if I had sat in a small room rolling a
cigarette and listened to you piss in the bathroom,
but that didn’ happen. your letters got sadder.
your lovers betrayed you. kid, I wrote back, all
lovers betray. it didn’ help. you said
you had a crying bench and it was by a bridge and
the bridge was over a river and you sat on the crying
bench every night and wept for the lovers who had
hurt and forgotten you. I wrote back...Read more of this...

by Carver, Raymond
...you could see
circles under my eyes.
You said I needed more regular sleep,
and I agreed. Each of us went
to the bathroom, and climbed back into bed
on our respective sides.
Pulled the covers up. "Good night,"
you said, for the second time that night.
And fell asleep. Maybe
into that same dream, or else another.

 *

I lay until daybreak, holding
both arms fast across my chest.
Working my fingers now and then.
While my thoughts kept circling...Read more of this...

by Hacker, Marilyn
...hy are you here, waiting for a train?
You could have run a hot bath, read Montaigne.
But would footsteps beyond the bathroom door's
bolt have disturbed the nondescript interior's
familiarity, shadowed the plain
blue draperies? You reflect, you know no one
who would, of you, echo your author's
"Because it was he; because it was I,"
as a unique friendship's non sequitur.
No footsteps and no friend: that makes you free.
The train approaches, wreathed in smoke like fu...Read more of this...



by Lehman, David
...d.
What was that one thing? He'll never know,
Because at just that moment he heard the sound
Of broken glass in the bathroom, and when he got there,
It was dark. His hand went to the wall
But the switch wasn't where it was supposed to be
Which felt like déjà vu. And then she was gone.
And now he knew how it felt to stand
On the local platform as the express whizzes by
With people chatting in a dialect 
Of English he couldn't understand, because his English
Was...Read more of this...

by Lowell, Robert
...for a tooth.

No ease for the boy at the keyhole,
his telescope,
when the women's white bodies flashed
in the bathroom. Young, my eyes began to fail.

Nothing! No oil
for the eye, nothing to pour
on those waters or flames.
I am tired. Everyone's tired of my turmoil....Read more of this...

by Sexton, Anne
...his manic smile—
even he seems blurred, small and pale.
I have come back,
recommitted,
fastened to the wall like a bathroom plunger,
held like a prisoner
who was so poor
he fell in love with jail.

I stand at this old window
complaining of the soup,
examining the grounds,
allowing myself the wasted life.
Soon I will raise my face for a white flag,
and when God enters the fort,
I won't spit or gag on his finger.
I will eat it like a white flower.
Is this t...Read more of this...

by Bukowski, Charles
...t me a bed
scrubbed and waxed the kitchen floor
scrubbed the walls
vacuumed
cleaned the toilet
the bathtub
scrubbed the bathroom floor
and cut my toenails and 
my hair.
then
all on the same day
the plumber came and fixed the kitchen faucet
and the toilet
and the gas man fixed the heater
and the phone man fixed the phone.
noe I sit in all this perfection.
it is quiet.
I have broken off with all 3 of my girlfriends.
I felt better when everything was in 
diso...Read more of this...

by Ashbery, John
...but I had a
kind of dark foreknowledge of what it would be like.
Everything, from eating watermelon or going to the bathroom
or just standing on a subway platform, lost in thought
for a few minutes, or worrying about rain forests,
would be affected, or more precisely, inflected
by my new attitude.I wouldn't be preachy,
or worry about children and old people, except
in the general way prescribed by our clockwork universe.
Instead I'd sort of let things be what they...Read more of this...

by Betjeman, John
...Kind o’er the kinderbank leans my Myfanwy,
White o’er the playpen the sheen of her dress,
Fresh from the bathroom and soft in the nursery
Soap scented fingers I long to caress.

Were you a prefect and head of your dormit'ry?
Were you a hockey girl, tennis or gym?
Who was your favourite? Who had a crush on you?
Which were the baths where they taught you to swim?

Smooth down the Avenue glitters the bicycle,
Black-stockinged legs under navy blue serge,
Home a...Read more of this...

by Brautigan, Richard
...old receipts to the San Francisco Chronicle

thrown all over the bed and the children's toothbrushes were

still in the bathroom medicine cabinet.

 Behind the place was an old outhouse and to get down to it,

you had to follow the path down past some apple trees and a

patch of strange plants that we thought were either a good

spice that would certainly enhance our cooking or the plants

were deadly nightshade that would cause our cooking to be

less.

 We carried t...Read more of this...

by Brautigan, Richard
...room contained a couch, a glass cabinet

with Chinese things in it and a table and three chairs. There

was a tiny bathroom fastened like a watch fob to the room.

 I was sitting on a stool in the bookstore one afternoon

reading a book that was in the shape of a chalice. The book

had clear pages like gin, and the first page in the book read:



 Billy

 the Kid

 born

 November 23,

 1859

 in

 New York

 City



 The owner of the bookstore came up to me, and...Read more of this...

by Brautigan, Richard
...religious and intimate the goldfish and the gun

looked together.

 They had a cat named 208. They covered the bathroom

floor with newspaper and the cat crapped on the newspaper.

My friend said that 208 thought he was the only cat left in the

world, not having seen another cat since he was a tiny kitten.

They never let him out of the room. He was a red cat and

very aggressive. When you played with that cat, he really

bit you. Stroke 208's fu...Read more of this...

by Brautigan, Richard
...e stuff,

abandoned equipment and tropical flowers, on the floor and

on the furniture.

 I took the sheet into the bathroom and plopped it into the

tub and turned the cold water on it. Their dog came in and

started barking at me.

 The dog barked so loud that the bathroom was soon filled

with dead people. One of them wanted to use my wet sheet

for a shroud. I said no, and we got into a big argument over

it and woke up the Puerto Ricans in the next ap...Read more of this...

by Bukowski, Charles
...y
cut it off..." 
I took the cat back, it was a hot summer, one of the
hottest in decades, I put him on the bathroom 
floor, gave him water and pills, he wouldn't eat, he
wouldn't touch the water, I dipped my finger into it
and wet his mouth and I talked to him, I didn't go any-
where, I put in a lot of bathroom time and talked to 
him and gently touched him and he looked back at
me with those pale blue crossed eyes and as the days went
by he made his first move
d...Read more of this...

by Ginsberg, Allen
...rd was Elephant Tiglon Hippogriff Unicorn
 Ants
But figured he really understood me when we made it in Ignaz Wisdom's 
 bathroom.

But next day he sent me a leaf from his Smoky Mountain retreat
'I love you little Bo-Bo with your delicate golden lions
But there being no Self and No Bars therefore the Zoo of your dear Father
 hath no lion
You said your mother was mad don't expect me to produce the Monster for
 your Bridegroom.'

Confused dazed and exalted bethought me o...Read more of this...

by Bukowski, Charles
...I said, "we needn't do it at all." 
"No, wait, I want to now. Let me freshen up a bit." 
Cass went into the bathroom. She came out shortly, looking quite wonderful, her long
black hair glistening, her eyes and lips glistening, her glistening... She displayed her
body calmly, as a good thing. She got under the sheet. 
"Come on, lover man." 
I got in. She kissed with abandon but without haste. I let my hands run over her body,
thr...Read more of this...

by Bukowski, Charles
...ame up over the street curbings,
across the lawns, climbed up the steps and
entered the houses.
there were mops and bathroom towels,
and the rain often came up through the 
toilets:bubbling, brown, crazy,whirling,
and all the old cars stood in the streets,
cars that had problems starting on a 
sunny day,
and the jobless men stood
looking out the windows
at the old machines dying
like living things out there.
the jobless men,
failures in a failing time
were imprisoned ...Read more of this...

by Bukowski, Charles
...out into the street.
squadcars full of cops
arrived. a police heli-
coptor circled overhead.
I stood in the bathroom
and grinned in the mirror.
it's not often at the age
of 55 that such splendid
things occur.
better than the Watts
riots.
the 34 year old
came back in. she had
pissed all over her-
self and her clothing
was torn and she was
followed by 2 cops who
wanted to know why.
pulling up my shorts
I tried to explain....Read more of this...

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Book: Reflection on the Important Things