Spice of Life

Hardworking vs Smart

Some animated conversation was going on in my kitchen,
where the austere bay leaf was imparting a lesson,

“A spice should be like me, present everywhere
having a clove-like taste and pepper- like odour,

“Whether it’s soup or sauce, I add a pleasant flavour,
while you are bitter in taste emitting a pungent odour.”

This unwarranted outburst made the  rude looking asafoetida upset,
“Hold on you leafy guy, don’t blow your own trumpet,

“No curries, pickles vegetables is complete without my deep aroma,
and I treat epilepsy, indigestion, stomach-ache and asthma”

‘Baylu’ countered, “I also treat gastric ulcers and infections,
besides being a panacea for diabetes, migraine and hypertension,

“I’m bay leaf, a leaf not fallen, but chosen one,
people call me tejpatta, a leaf fast in action,

“As a hardworking guy, I’m put first in any vegetable,
but stay there till the pressure cooker’s final whistle.”

Naughty ‘asafo’ teased, “And what happens finally after cooking,
you’re pulled first and thrown away before serving and eating.”

“You’re a slackar but smart and cunning”, bay leaf coolly said,
“just a pinch of yours brings good rankings and accolades,

“I be-leaf in myself, in patience and perseverance,
So people give me due recognition even in my absence…”

I know this spicy verbal duel will never end,
But I relish it as my kitchen needs both condiments.

–Kaushal Kishore



  1. Thank you, Kaushal, for your amusing conversation in the kitchen. My bay leaf is the winner because the bay leaf tree grows by my kitchen door, so its importance is assured. The scent of freshly picked bay leaf is wonderful in its sharpness and aroma!
    As I love spices, I have many in various forms close to my range cooker.
    This conversation is very on time as it is a time of making chutneys.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have also bay leaf in my garden, and enjoy its fresh aroma.. It’s my favourite too. But most spices I have to buy. Thank you, Joanna, for sharing your beautiful reflections. I’m glad that you liked the lively conversation. It’s heartening to note that you make chutneys, without which we Indians can’t live.


      1. Thought you might be so a meat up might be not be for you but you could give peas a chance and be more politically carrot. Stay to the rice side of the food spectrum. I’ve pun nished you enough with these groaners.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thanks for being such a good sport, KK. You chose to be amused rather than offended by an inadvertent comment about a meat up. Some people would have been appalled that such a thing was even mentioned.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Thank you, Pat for your kind comment, but I don’t feel offended by a thing or act, that’s not in my control. There are grocery stores and restaurants serving both veg and non veg stuff side by side. We believe in mutual respect and peaceful coexistence.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re absolutely right, Dawn, all have valid points, because all have their respective utilities. That’s why it’s rightly said, variety is the spice of life. Thank you for this lovely comment 😊 💕💕

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh this was a wonderful playful story KK with lots to appreciate.

    love these lines soooo well pared and meaningful
    ““I be-leaf in myself, in patience and perseverance,
    So people give me due recognition even in my absence…”

    Liked by 2 people

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