Akananuru: Palai- 163


Wilted Lotus, Source: Internet


(The heroine speaks in desperation to her friend who consoles her)

The cool clouds gathered in the sky
And poured heavily with thunderclaps
And caused the flowers to get crushed;
Then the rains became scanty;
It was the closing phase of the season
When our lover left us here alone and parted;
We were overtaken by boundless grief;
As we have grown weak
Even the very few bangles
Slipped off from our forearms;
Now when we are yearningly gazing
At the direction he went,
Expecting eagerly his return,
We are assailed by grief.
O northerly, carrying with you a benumbing chillness
That could cause even the hill to quake!
You seem to blow only for me, quite mercilessly,
At this midnight of early dewy season,
When the dew drops which look like
The fine particles of water that are thrown off
When an elephant puffs away after taking water,
Veil every place and cause lotus blossoms to get wilted.
May you blow like this, losing no time,
In the direction of our lover!
Should you do so, he whose heart is strongly linked
To the efforts of earning riches,
May perhaps return thinking of me,
His heart melting like the washing of a fine sand strip
Overrun by the channel water.

–Poet Kalar Kiran Eyirriyar
Translated by Dr. A. Dakshinamurthy
AKANANURU: Volume II Manimitai Pavalam, Bharathidasan University, 1999.


அகநானூறு – 163. பாலை

விண் அதிர்பு தலைஇய, விரவு மலர் குழைய,

தண் மழை பொழிந்த தாழ்பெயற் கடை நாள்,
எமியம் ஆக, துனி உளம் கூர,
சென்றோர் உள்ளிச் சில் வளை நெகிழ,
பெரு நசை உள்ளமொடு வருநசை நோக்கி
விளியும் எவ்வமொடு, ‘அளியள்’ என்னாது

களிறு உயிர்த்தன்ன கண் அழி துவலை
முளரி கரியும் முன்பனிப் பானாள்,
குன்று நெகிழ்ப்பு அன்ன குளிர் கொள் வாடை!
எனக்கே வந்தனை போறி! புனற் கால்
அயிர் இடு குப்பையின் நெஞ்சு நெகிழ்ந்து அவிழ,

கொடியோர் சென்ற தேஎத்து, மடியாது
இனையை ஆகிச் செல்மதி;
வினை விதுப்புறுநர் உள்ளலும் உண்டே!

பிரிவின்கண் வற்புறுக்கும் தோழிக்குத்

தலைமகள் ஆற்றாமை மீதூரச் சொல்லியது. -கழார்க்கீரன் எயிற்றியார்


Akananuru: Neytal – Poem 70


(The companion of the heroine discloses the happy decision of the hero to wed the heroine)

O my friend,
The village women skilled in gossip
Made public our affair
And everyone came to know of our kinship with our lover,
Who is the chief of a littoral region;
There, the successful fisherfolks
With curved boats
Greatly praise the worth
Of their beauteous nets of multitudinous interstices
And divide amongst their kin
In their malodorous village
The Ayilai fish they netted.
Now, the dinsome village is wrapped up in silence
Like unto the banyan tree of many a stilt root
From the branches of which birds chirped ceaselessly
And which the triumphant Rama stilled
With a show of his hand,
That he might discuss in peace secret matters.
At the hoary Tanushkoti upon the shore —
The town of the great Pandyas,
The wielders of victorious spears –,
A town where women would collect blooms of neytal
With rounded stems
Which would blossom amidst green foliage
In the watery fields, hard by the shore,
Where the fresh and golden blossoms of Nalal
And punnai trees shed their pollen
And make picturesque the sand —-,
To adorn themselves on festival days.

Poet Maturai Tamil Kutthanar Katuvan Mallanar
Translated by Dr. A. Dakshinamurthy
Akananuru: Volume I Kalitriyanai Nirai, Bharathidasan University, 1999.

Akananuru: Palai – Poem 55

(The mother’s answer to her friends who console her on the elopement of her daughter)

The orb of the sun that moves in the heavens
Sense forth its fierce rays to the Earth;
The heat causes even the rocks to split.
The route stretching long is so hot
That even the flying birds wilt and die.
The gravel, sharp like chisel, puncture the feet of the wayfarers
Who might fall dead anywhere in the wilderness
Full of singed bamboo clusters burnt by the fierce heat
It is through this path, my daughter eloped with her lover,
A lad strong like a tusker of enormous strength
And I grow weak heaving heart sighs
Like unto the bellow of the ironsmith.
My heart is on fire. I canst not shut my eyes in slumber,
And my mind presents to me the picture
Of my daughter’s wading through the wilderness,
Ceralatan fought with Karikalvalavan with weapons
Bright at the battle-field of Vennipparantalai
And got wounded on his back;
Besieged by shame caused by his ignoble wound,
He fasted unto death, facing north
With sword in his hand, in the field where he lost to his foe.
The news bitter and sweet at once, fill on the ears of the wise,
Who gave up their ghost forthwith following their monarch to Valhalla.
I feel not sorry for the reason that my daughter eloped with her lover
Through a terrible wilderness; But I grieve deep and wrestle with my life
That refuses to quit like unto that of Ceralatan’s bound, as it is to this earth.

Poet Mamulanar
Translated by Dr. A. Dakshinamurthy
AKANANURU: Volume I KALITRIYANAI NIRAI, Bharathidasan University, 1999.

Note: One’s friends fasting unto death was an ancient practice. This happened in the case of Koperumcholan, who fasted unto death due to a misunderstanding with his sons.

(Purananuru: 217,220,221,222)


Akananuru:Neytal – Poem 110

(The companion of the heroine discloses the clandestine love of the heroine, to the foster mother)

I reck not if our mother should know of it;
Neither do I, if this scandalous and dinsome village hears of it.
I will speak out in plain words; None else is the cause.
I will even make solemn affirmations in the name of the deity of Pukar
Whose floods are full of maelstroms.
One day we sported in the sea with our garlanded friends;
We build tiny houses of sand and indulged in imaginary cooking;
After getting tired of our sporting we rested awhile by way of relief;
At that time came a stranger to us and said,
“O innocent girls of broad, soft and bamboo like shoulders!
The day light has dwindled; I am too weary;
What if I were your guest and share with you your victuals
Served in a soft leaf and stay with you in this small hamlet bustling with activity?”
On beholding him , we out of our bashfulness dropped our heads down,
Hid behind one another’s back and said: “Sir, this is not a dish fit for you,
It is but a dish cooked with unappetizing fish.”
All of a sudden, we beheld the vessels in the sea
With their flags fluttering in the air; We ran with great eagerness
After destroying the sand-houses with our feet;
We avoided standing before him any further;
With a protracted look at me alone, amongst all who stood there,
He spoke with a sore heart, “O girl of bright forehead!
Shall I take leave of you?” When I said, “Yes”, he stood for a long while
Holding the lotus staff of his chariot. He who is even now envisioned by me
Is the cause of her malady.

Poet Pontaippacalaiyar
Translated by Dr. A. Dakshinamurthy
Bharathidasan University, 1999

Akananuru: Marutham – Poem 16

(The heroine speaks to her husband who returns home after a visit to his hetaera)

My lord, our son is adorned with golden bangles whose charm attracts everyone;
His spotless palms are like the inner petals of the lotus flower
That flourishes in the midst of the very ancient pond where flourish otters;
His mouth is red as ruby and his sweet prattle evoked great fun
As it does not conform to rules of speech; He stood all alone in the street
Pulling his toy-car, when your young hetaera with her sharp teeth,
Approached him in love since he resembled you.
Assured of the absence of by-standers, she took him in her arms saying,
“O my dear life! Come to me!”, and stood holding him
Close to her tender bosom adorned with golden jewels.
I watched her standing at a distance but did not move from where I stood
And then moved to her and on a sudden, hugged her and invited her to our home saying,
“O flawless young girl! Why are you so bewildered? You too are a mother to him!”
When she blushed and dropped her head down and stood scratching the ground with her toe
Like a thief who pleaded guilty of larceny when caught red-handed.
My lord! Did I not take pity on her, your favorite girl- as chaste as celestial Aruntati -,
And treat her with affection deeming her fit to be the mother of your son?
Why do you lie and pretend ignorant?

Poet – Cakalacanar.
Translated by A. Dakshinamurthy

Akananuru: Mullai – Poem 4

(The heroine’s companion consoles her friend at the advent of the
rainy season)

The rumbling clouds winged with lightning
Poured amain big drops of rain and augured the rainy season;
Buds with pointed tips  have sprouted in the jasmine vines;
The buds of Illam and the green trunk Kondrai have unfolded soft;
The stags, their black and big horns like twisted iron
Rushed up toward the pebbled pits filled with water
And leap out jubilantly having slaked their thirst;
The wide expansive Earth is now free
From all agonies of the summer heat
And the forest looks exceedingly sweet;
Behold there O friend of choicest bangles!
Our hero of the hilly track will be coming eftsoon,
Driving fast his ornate chariot drawn by the steeds
With waving plumes and trimmed manes
When the stiffly tugged reins
Will sound like the strumming of Yal.
As he drives, he has the chariot bells tied up
So as not to disturb the union of bees
That live on the pollen of the blossoms in the bushes.
He rushes onward thinking all along of your great beauty.
O friend whose fragrance is like unto the blossoming Kantal
On the mountain, tall and huge,east of Urantai of dinsome festivity!