[Translation] Bharathiyaar: Vellai Thamarai Poovil Iruppal

This song has for long been my favourite composition as Bharathiyaar in this song veers away from traditional presentations of divinity. This song is a tribute to the muse in Indian mythology- the goddess Saraswathi. Interestingly, the poet doesn't mention her by name but chooses instead to showcase her presence through a discussion of human talent and creativity.

Vellai tamarai puvil iruppal vinai seiyum oliyil iruppal
Kollai inbam kulavu kavidai kurum pavalar ullathilruppal

Ulladam porul tediyunarde odum vedattin ulnintr olirval
Kallamatra munivargal kurum karunai vasagathut porulaval

Madar tingural paatil iruppal makkal pesum mazhalaiyil ullal
Gidam padum kuyilin kuralai kiliyin navaiel iruppidum kondal

Kodanganra tozhiludaitagi kulavu cittiram gopuram koyil
Idanaittin ezhilidaiyutral inbame vadivagida petral.

The one who sits on a white lotus lives in the sound of the veena,
The poem that brims with a million pleasures- she dwells in the hearts of its creators.

In my quest for finding meaning, (of life) I realized,
That she reveals herself to ardent seekers through Vedic chants.

She lives in the utterances of guiless sages and forms the quintessence of their kind words.
She resides in the sweet song of women and in the chatter of very young children,
She has her abode in the song of the nightingale and the parrot-
And in selfless acts performed as a labour of love,
like a painting, a tower or a temple.
She is the beauty in all things beauteous and exists as the very personification of joy!


  1. Brilliant translation...very beautifully voiced out the essence of the poetry!!

  2. With all due respect this poem was rendered much better by Madurai Mani Iyer than Bombay jayasri. Iyerval sang it like a poem, as the mahakavi meant it to be. Bombay jayasri sings it like a concert krithi.

    1. Well, I suppose to each - his or her own! :)

  3. can u please translate bharathi's arive deivam?

  4. Very very good to hear and it leads to peaceful state.Tension and pressure decreased.Congratulations to all.Thank you.

  5. Have been listening to this song from many years, many thanks for making me understand the true meaning.


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