Piercing, brilliant eyes – Kannama,
Are they sun or moon?
Round black eyes – Kannama,
Are they the blackness of the sky?
Like the black-blue saree of silk,
Studded with diamonds;
Are the stars that manifest,
In the middle of the night!
Garden flower’s splendor -
Is that your splendid smile?
The blue waves of the sea –
Are the waves in your heart!1
Graceful cuckoo’s song –
The sweetness of your voice!
Tender maiden – Kannamma,
Embracing love, I feel.
Lock is opened by hand – good
Mind is opened by intellect
Song is opened by melody – joyful
Home is opened by a woman(wife).
Plantain leaf2 is wiped clean by hand – mind’s
Home is wiped clean by truth
Hunting is done by arrow – love’s
Fortress is won by words.
Breath is fastened by mind – the
Body is protected by this deed,
Rice is consumed by mouth – heart’s
Courage is consumed from mother.
1. The heart cannot endure
Dwelling upon fickle minded humans,
Who live in deathly trepidation –
There is nothing in this world that doesn’t frighten them;
‘Wily ghosts’, they claim,
‘Dwells on this tree, lives in that pond,
‘Sleeps on the roof’s crest,’ – distress themselves,
In rumination, frighten themselves. (The heart…) Continue reading “Bharathiyar Poem Translation- The Heart cannot Endure”→
Permeating wind O, Kannamma1 –
Musing over your love makes me ecstatic
Elixir fount your lips,
Moon soaked brimming eyes,
Smelted to purest gold – your body;
In this world, for as long as I live –
You satiate my mind, precluding distractions
Transforming me into a celestial being, right here (on earth).
By banks of the sacred river, on the southern corner,
In the garden of Champaka1 (flowers),
Should I wait, you promised to come in the moon
Accompanied by a friend(chaperone).
You broke your word O, Kannamma!2
My heart is atremble!
Everywhere I look – your semblance
Emerge in everything; Continue reading “Bharathiyar Poem Translation – Rendezvous Missed”→
Subramaniya Bharathi, was a 20th century Tamil poet, who lived and died in the Indian subcontinent – which at that time, was mostly colonized by the British.
He wrote poems in Tamil – an ancient language rich in literature. Like most of its contemporaries, such as Sanskrit or Greek, only the scholars could create and savor the beauty of these languages, because special training was required to read and comprehend these heavily ornate and complex works of literature. As such, the ordinary person was excluded from partaking in the literary feast, even though colloquial versions of these works existed. Continue reading “Introduction to, Bharathiyar Poem Translation”→