Scribbles on the walls
With growing children
Scare the status
Of a wealthy household;

Scoldings and scaffoldings
Closely follow each other to
Hide the simple scrawls
Of inquisitive hands
Holding the pencil
For the first time….

The sudden burst
Of arty expressions
Give way to
Whitewashed walls
Reflecting new pride
And renewed paint
Of purpose

Muffling the tears
and the
Scrawls of an
Innocent heart….


26 responses »

  1. Smita Luthra says:

    Awwww. Heart wrenching. Lovely thought!

  2. Dear Om,

    A lovely poem written from the heart. Children are by nature free and do what their hearts and minds unconditionally ask them to do irrespective of what others may say. Sadly, certain conventions or rules have to be followed. As long as the child is not traumatized, fine…
    Nice that your poem rekindled past memories in so many readers at Write Space.

  3. Dear Hari,
    Thanks. You have asked a very pertinent question. My son had/still has the freedom – but unfortunately, we either live in qrs or rented houses – and hence, the luxury is not there. In the ealier rented house where we stayed, we got it whitewashed before we left the house…..Scribbling per se is NOT a good thing – but for kids who are exploring their creativity, it provides a nice platform, I feel.

  4. A.Hari says:

    Dear OM,

    Very interesting poem OM. Once I was very much moved after seeing numbers 1 to 10 written near the main entrance of Chennai Central station along with mark 10/10 written by a kid. What about your son’s habit? Did he have the freedom to write in your house?


  5. vimala madon says:

    even though we lived all our young lives in rented mes houses we never dared to paint or draw on walls, on pain of real well, pain. But what we siblings would do is allot each other marks for services expected and done, to be rewarded with some change, or a precious book to read before its owner did, and these marks we would jot against initials in pencil, in tiny writing, along the corner of the wall where it would angle to meet another wall! Such deviousness at such a young age.

    • Vimala Madon Madam,
      Your comment took me to my childhood.
      When I was small, the milk vendor (we never had packets in those days, remember?) used to deliver milk, and write the day’s milk delivery on a small place on the wall reserved for such transactions! At the end of the month, the calculations were done based on the pencil writings. This place used to get whitewashed every year, and every year, there used to be fresh pencil accounts! 🙂

  6. Lesia Wallander says:

    Hey, I stumbled on your website from reddit. It is not blog post I would typically read, but I liked your spin on it. Thanks for creating a blog post worth reading!

  7. Sonal Shree says:

    Better to have some space exclusively meant for scribbling in each house, isn’t it ? Lovely poem.

  8. Tanuja Chatterjee says:

    Thank you Omji for reviving my golden era! I thought myself to be abnormal, when I along with my sister, played this game of deciphering faces. It was fun and used to get quite scary at times.

    • Tanuja Madam,
      Thank you. I too, used to play this game of deciphering faces along with my sister “sum” and brother “jai” – in fact, we used to see “phantom” and “tarzan” in some of them! 🙂

  9. Shernaz says:

    Strangely this is what I kept thinking of for a few weeks after scolding my grand son for unknowingly leaving oil stains on my freshly painted wall…how we wound those little hearts to keep our walls looking good! I still feel very bad every time I think of the incident.

  10. gora sarkar says:

    Wish I were a poet.

  11. vimala ramu says:

    In my mother’s house, the broad dado in the dining room and the smooth cement side of the well provided all the slate I needed to work out my Science and Maths problems for my degree, with a piece of chalk. A nice poem.

    • Thank you, Vimala Madam. You must have used the THIN pencil chalk, (we used call it bulpam in Tamil – don’t know what it is called in other languages) going by the description. Or was it chalk only?

  12. Mira Pawar says:

    Your poem took me back to my childhood….i think all of us at some time or the other scribbled on the walls. You know something, i still have a very strong urge to paint on the walls but never tried doing it. May be some day i will fulfil my desire of painting on the walls.

  13. Beyniaz says:

    ‘Muffling the tears
    and the
    Scrawls of an
    Innocent heart….’ how true. look forward to more poems from you, Om.

  14. Very beautiful and true. Scribbling on wall has its own charm for a child.

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