Wednesday, 18 April 2012

[Translation] Bharathiyaar: Aasai Mugam Marandu


Aasai Mugam Marandu

Original:
Aasaimugam marantho pochey,
Idhai Yaaridam solven adi thozhi;
Nesam marakavillai nenjam,
Enil Ninaivu mugam marakalaamo;

Kannil theriyuthoru thotram,
Athil Kannan azhagu muzhuthillai
Nannu mugavadivu kaanil, andha
Nallavalla sirippai kaanom;

Oivu mozhithalum illamal
Avan uravai ninaithirukkum ullam
Vayum uraipathundu kandai
Andha maayan pughazhinai eppodum

Kangal purinthuvitta paavam
Uyir Kannan urumarakkalachu
Pengalinidathil idu pole
Oru pedamai munbu kandathundo?

Thenai maranthirukkum vandum
Oli sirappai maranthuvitta poovum
Vaanai maranthirukkum payirum
Indha vaiyam muzhuthumillai thozhi

Kannan mugam maranthuponal,
Intha Kangal irunthu payan undo;
Vanna padamumillai kandai,
Inni Vaazhum vazhi ennadi thozhi;

Translation:

Oh! I have forgotten my dear love's face my friend,
Tell me, with whom should I share this lament-
The heart though has not forgotten its fondness
Then why did my memories let me down?

The form that I perceive before me,
Has not in sum all his beauty;
In those eyes set in that beauteous visage
I find not his sweet winsome smile!

My heart ceaselessly dwells on our relationship-
Haven't you noticed my constant talk
about that illusionist?

But a sin committed by my eyes
Has caused his disappearance from memory
Have you detected such folly
In other women my friend?

Was there ever a bee that spurns honey?
A flower that disdains sunlight?
Or a crop that ignores rain?
Any place else in this world?

If I could forget Kannan's face
Of what further use are these eyes?
Alas! I don't even possess a picture
How do I live out the rest of my life, in this state, my friend?



Monday, 16 April 2012

[Blog] What would you do if…

I recall being asked this question a long time ago - "What are the three things that you would like to take if you were ever stranded on a deserted island?" 

By virtue of being hypothetical this question affords a wide range of responses- I don’t remember my own at that time but what I do remember is that I made a mental note to read Robinson Crusoe once again to be better prepared the next time around. This question I was told was doing the rounds at interviews back then.
Coming to think of it - there can only be three broad categories of responses.
  1. Be the hopeless romantic and quote Omar Khayyam –"A book of verses underneath the bough
    A flask of wine, a loaf of bread and thou

    Beside me singing in the wilderness

    And wilderness is paradise now.”

    (Obviously Khayyam has more than three choices but well…)
    OR
  2. Be very practical and say that take a box of matches, a pocket knife and a music player and other variants that ensure a comfortable stay and an early rescue.
    OR
  3. not take anything at all and rough it out much like Tom Hanks in Cast away.

This question might perhaps not caught me off guard had I been exposed then to explorations of the subject in Hollywood films such as The Edge or the television series Lost. The early episodes of Lost presented a thrilling and dare I say credible lesson on survival. (I am pretty sure that there are several other films on the subject that I can’t recall at the moment!)

But over the last few years and as recently as last week we have had a spate of unfortunate earthquakes all around us. And earthquakes and tsunami’s have this uncanny habit of arriving at very short notice- So instead of travelling to that hypothetical island all we have to do is to be mentally prepared for an event closer to home!

So I would rather rephrase the question as– “If there was an earthquake warning in your area what are the three things that you would take with you?  I wonder what the responses would be – would someone still be romantic or would everyone be plain practical?
What is your take?

Saturday, 7 April 2012

[Translation] Bharathiyaar: Chinnan Chiru Kiliye


Chinnan Chiru Kiliye

 This poem is one of the greatest tributes to being a parent.It explores the various emotions that parents feel for their offspring. The child addressed here may be the god Krishna for whom the poet had special affinity, but the child here could very easily be any child. 

Original:
Chinnan chirukkiLiyE kaNNammA selvak-kaLanjiyamE
Ennaik-kali theerthey ulagil Etram puriya vandAi
PiLLaik-kaniyamudE kaNNammA pEsum por-chittiramE
ALLi aNaittiDavE en munnE Adi varum tEnE

Odi varugaiyilE kaNNammA uLLam kuLirudaDi       
Adi-tiridal kaNDAl unnaip-pOi Avi tazhuvudaDI
Ucchi tanai mughandAl garuvam Ongi vaLarudaDi
Mecchi unnai oorar pugazhndAl mEni shilirkkudaDI

Kannattil muttamittal uLLam thAn kaL veri koLLudaDi
Unnait-tazhuvidilO kaNnammA unnatham,AgudaDI
Un kaNNil neer vazhindAl ennenjil udiram koTTudaDi
En kaNNin pAvaiyanrO kaNNammA ennuyir ninradanrO?



Translation:
O tiniest of tiny parrot Kannamma, o treasure trove of all wealth!
You have come into this world to rid me of all my sins and elevate me;
You are as sweet as the nectar of a tender fruit Kannama,
-You are a golden painting that has come alive.
When you come dancing before me, my sweet,
You urge me to pick and cuddle you in delight.

There is such peace in my heart Kannamma when you come running towards me-
My souls engulfs you every time you dance and scamper around me.
Oh! I swell with pride when I plant a kiss on your forehead-
My being shudders when people appreciate and praise you.

Kissing your cheeks accomplishes such great intoxication,
and each embrace grants such ecstasy.
But when a tear drops from your eye, my heart begins to bleed;
Are you not the pupil of my eye Kanamma?
And is my life not entirely thine?

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

[Blog] Waiting...


If we look at our life it seems that life is one long journey that involves a lot of waiting. When we are young – we are often told – ‘You are too young for this ' or ‘Wait till you grow up!’ There is so much curiosity in childhood about what people(especially my dad) do in offices and why falling in love is a taboo. I am reminded of my frustration when my limited rights have been taken away from me as punishment and of that ubiquitous neighbourhood bully who ensured my forced 'grounding' and how much these instances triggered my desperation to grow up.

When one is five years old, adulthood seems like its only five years away. But once there, there are still things that are out of reach. Like the fact that you cant play for too long outside, there are issues with pocket money and that bully continues to be a threat. So then you tell yourself 'wait a few more years'- and you meander through life and before you know it you are twenty.

For a five year old by 20 one should realistically be over the moon- but alas as we age our needs change too. So the obsession with where dad goes in the morning is not there anymore- in fact you don’t care where he goes as long as he finances your needs- now the wait is for that particular college in the city and that particular course.

And I almost forgot that particular member of the opposite sex whom you have decided that you can't live without for the rest of your life.
Then there is that wait for the job, the promotion, the desired salary –the house in the upmarket locality, the car that is the envy of all your friends, the children that excel in academics-The list of all the things we wait for seems endless...

Recently a thought crossed my mind. Amid this endless waiting people have stopped to ask these questions as well.
 Is there a meaning to life?
Is there life after death?
Is there a god up there somewhere and do people keep their tryst with their maker?

So this endless rehearsals that is played out through out our life with waiting and outcome- is for that one major wait for that all important answer-
Unfortunately the dead don’t return to enlighten us and when death does take one away we may be past caring for the outcome.