“Unakuwanga na madharau sana, Boss”
My eyes vacillate between his blood-shot eyes
and the club faltering in his hand
There is an immense air of indecisiveness,
my eyes and his club need to act, almost immediately
I could give him an all-knowing look then a few words of calling out
All at the risk of having this club decide on a plan of action
He has been watching me or imagining folks like me
His frustration is almost tangible
He has that why-are-you-making-my-job-difficult look
I look at him not threateningly but disturbingly
All the same
The door to the Ladies bangs
Shall we talk shit?
A woman screams as I enter the first cubicle
Another complains about men raping women in toilets
Yet another deliberates with a stranger on how best to box this dude
I hear hushed tones and whispers deliberately made loud
A tiny bit of my boxer shorts is trapped somewhere in my pants’ zip
Arghh, did they have to write Jesus on this door?
My bladder is giving way and Jesus won’t help for shit!
One drop of piss, one tiny drop then another
I just broke my zip, and my head is trying to offend everyone equally
For equality sake swear at ‘em all
The bloody security guard, fucken’ body-policing women
and this Jesus who lets sinners write his name in a freaking toilet cubicle!
Can’t I just piss in peace White Jesus?
In this silence, I hear him say ‘no’
So fuck you!
I stand inside this cubicle afraid to get out
Reading signs instructing people how not to crap and piss
This makes me want to weep, signs with writing
Elaborate reminders on flushing toilets
as though anyone recycles that kak
So we’ve reached a point where we can read
but cannot reliably get our piss and poo into a hole!
I straighten my tie, struggle to zip up and I am out of here
Thinking of the irony of the ewe and ram pictures on these doors
A guard in braids, boots and a tie once defining me by clothes
I imagine we’ve achieved a downright utopian society
Complete with cowed nervous citizens in toilets
Carrying around birth certificates as proof
And I am still getting
Public toilets are so full of shit