Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#176  Postby arasi » 18 Aug 2011 23:19

Ravi,
Others can tell you, especially CML, but I'm pretty sure it was the British. The French kept an eye on the svadESis, I bet, but for other reasons. They did not mind their living in their territory, but the World War might have changed it somewhat. Revolutionaries are capable of stirring the emotions of the populace and what if they repeated their action against the French government too? I really don't know.
As for the British, anything that Bharathi wrote would have been flagrant in their eyes, and for a good reason. He was raising national consciousness with his patriotic poems.So, the Vizuppuram check point. My aunt once said that her father smuggled (her word) some poems of Bharathi on his trips to Puduvai, and that's how she got to sing them. I wish I had remembered, which ones exactly!
What struck me most in this chapter was the appearance of the Mother, in her former life!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#177  Postby rshankar » 18 Aug 2011 23:46

Thanks Arasi. Did the Brit police serach the belongings of everyone traveling from Pondy, or just a few? And how did they select whom to search? In this day and age of facebook, and facebook-aided regime changes, I am sure the Brits would have lasted nary a week....
The appearance of the 'Mother' wasn't so out of the way for me, since I had come to know about her history when I lived in Pondy.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#178  Postby arasi » 18 Aug 2011 23:52

I mean, that Yadugiri met her in her pUrvASramam...

As for whether all passengers were searched, I don't guess so. Being a young (and married) child, she would not have traveled alone. If her father had accompanied her, they would have checked without fail!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#179  Postby arasi » 19 Aug 2011 02:55

SEVENTEEN




dEvar varugavenRu
(Welcoming the Celestials)



After a family wedding in Bangalore, I went back to Mysore to my in-laws. Four months later, my grandmother took me to Chennai. My mother went to Puduvai soon after. She took with her the two silver images of Krishna I had brought for Sakunthala and Subhadra (Iyer's daughter). I heard that Sakunthala played with her Krishna all day long, bathed him and sang to him at bed time. Bhayalakshmi Ammal put Subhadra's Krishna in a box lined with red silk and put it in her pUjA nook.

My friend Meena and I had been corresponding regularly. In one of her letters, she had said that Sakunthala had lost her Krishna and that very same day, she got high fever. "She is still very ill. Bharathi asked me to write to you to ask you if you could send another one for her. Please do, without fail." I sent another idol of Krishna through my mother.

In naLa varusham, in the month of aippasi, I went to Puduvai. Sakunthala was well now.
Iyer and Bharathi came to see me. I had heard that Bharathi was not his cheerful old self. My mother used to say: BharathiAr is always surrounded by people. It's because of his greatness as a poet.
It was not so now. It would have taken Bharathi some time to get used to the absence of his admiring crowd, I thought.

I was not that well myself. I could not go out freely as I used to. Still, after a few days, I went to Bharathi's house with my baby. He had just broken his vow of silence.
The baby was playing on the mat. Bharathi was very happy to see the way it was kicking its legs and gurgling. He was thrilled to see its play that he sang 'chinnanjiru kiLiyE kaNNammA' to it.
He said, "Look, Chellamma! The baby is playing divinely! "

Chellamma: Yadugiri, he hasn't seen a baby play in a long while. That's why he's so excited!

Bharathi: When a child plays happily, we are so happy. If it gets sick, we cannot bear it!

Chellamma: Yadugiri, I'm scared even now, to think of what we went through last year! This man who tells us forever to be brave, was squirming like a worm in grief. AmbAL saved Sakunthala. Even though he sang out most of the time, he couldn't calm down.

Bharathi: Chellmma spouts all this about me. You should have seen her! She wouldn't stay in a place for a moment, She would go about the place with a long face. "God, give me the fever and spare the child!," she would keep mumbling. I had to take care of her along with the child!

Chellamma: As if he did! He wouldn't let me go near her without my washing my hands in that horrible-smelling medicine! Whatever I touched, reeked of that stuff!I If I refused, he would fight with me. The child kept calling out 'Chellamma, Chellamma!'. I got fed up with his fussing. It's all like a nightmare now, when I think about it.

Bharathi: How would the germs die if we don't wash our hands? The doctor had warned us about it a hundred times. It was a dangerous kind of fever!

Chellamma: She suffered that burning fever, and the second week, he stuck the thermometer into her mouth and saw that she had very high fever. He shook it to check the temperature again, but it fell and broke because he was afraid and his hand was shaking! What could I do? I sent the servant maid to fetch the doctor. He said, "We have to wait until tomorrow to see how she does. Don't worry, though."
He gave her an injection. "I shouldn't have given you that thermometer," he added.
The child didn't seem conscious. She didn't utter a word, but we could see that she was suffering. I sat by her side without moving. Bharathi was wailing. "PApA!, I thought you were going to orate in big gatherings! That you would be a scholar! You can't even utter a word now!" He hit his head against the wall. I had to console him. All night, he kept crying out: Sakti, Sakti!
The fever came down the next morning. We had no money. How could we put up with all this?

Bharathi: Truly, those two months were hell. When Thangamma had the pneumonia, it wasn't that bad. Nanjunda Rao (in Chennai) looked after her as his own daughter. Swarnam (?) was there.

Chellamma: Appadurai (Chellmma's brother--publisher) was also there. You didn't have to be around. You were happy, being with your friends at work. Who's there for us here, though?

Yadugiri: Meena had written to me about Sakunthala. My father had written later that she was feeling much better.
BharathiyArE! How many new songs have you written?

Chellamma: Nowadays, it's all about the stupid vow of silence. More of those than verses! Yadugiri, I can't bear it. He used to sing or speak all the time. Now, it's all silence. He only communicates with signs and by writing things down. What weirdness is this!

Bharathi: Chellamma, you try to be silent too. There is happiness in it.

Chellamma: Yes, It's happiness I'm seeking! Who's to take care of the milkwoman, oil woman and the rest? I don't know which worthless (Chellamma uses the expression--maNNAIp pOgiRa=one who turns to dust) fellow led him to this!

Bharathi: No one had to. I tried it one day and it was bliss. So, I'm continuing it. If I do not utter a word for three days in a week, my writing flows unimpeded. Then, SvadESa mitran sends us the money regularly. Does it bother you?

Chellamma: The rainy season is here. The tiles on the roof are broken. The owner of the house has said that we have to get the roof repaired ourselves. ANNiammA told me that the house at the end of the street, a two-storied one, is vacant and the rent is reasonable. The owner had come to see us yesterday. Bharathi was observing silence. So, I had to tell him that Bharathi would see him in his house tomorrow. SAmiArs and paNDArams can indulge in vows of silence, not a householder! Where is it written that you can't write unless you observe silence? Everything at home comes to a standstill when he does this. I've gone through all kinds of drama with him. This is one of them! I don't know how many more I have to endure!

Bharathi: Chellamma, You don't have to go that far! You sound so bitter. I've spoken to the man and we are moving there on the next auspicious day. I will observe silence only for a few days in a month. How about that? Yadugiri, I do this because I want to find a new word in Tamizh, an equivalent for the word Aum.

Bharathi then sang dEvar varugavenRu.He also gave me copies of some other verses. Saktikku Atma samarppaNam, jayamuNDu bayamillai manamE, iyaRkai enRunai uraippAr, ulagattu nAyagiyE engaL muttumAri, kAlamAm vanattil, pozhudu pularndadu, manamEvu tiruvE and a part of kuyil pATTu were all there. I took them home with me.


* * * * *
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#180  Postby smala » 19 Aug 2011 10:02

Thanks Arasi, I feel vindicated now, re. the song 'chinnanjiru kiLiyE kaNNammA' t

Yadugiri's memoirs give us the valuable and specific context in which select powerful songs were composed - that this song full of intimate tender love was composed and sung in the company of Yadugiri and as a tribute to her newborn, is as poignant and meaningful as it is reflective of a love that he had for the child-women around him. That he suffered during Sakuntala's prolonged illness is equally salient. The presence of the newborn, his dear Yadugiri, his own Sakuntala well again after that worrisome illness...relief let his Muse finally break his silence releasing his pent-up emotions as it gushed through the exquisite lyrics.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#181  Postby rajeshnat » 19 Aug 2011 10:14

smala wrote:Thanks Arasi, I feel vindicated now, re. the song 'chinnanjiru kiLiyE kaNNammA' to it. Yadugiri's memoirs give us the valuable and specific context in which select songs were composed - that this song full of intimate tender love was composed and sung in the company of Yadugiri and as a direct tribute to her newborn, is poignant and meaningful. That he suffered during Sakuntala's prolonged illness is equally salient.


smala,
Arasi mentioned as :

The baby was playing on the mat. Bharathi was very happy to see the way it was kicking its legs and gurgling. He was thrilled to see its play that he sang 'chinnanjiru kiLiyE kaNNammA' to it.

That does not mean that he composed the song and sang for the first time before yAdugiri's kid. He may have composed much before and perhaps sang that for the 100th time.

Arasi,
What I like about yadugiri in general , she just casually mentions that she put her baby in the mat , a new born baby is a big think to talk and write.Yadugiri mentions casually as though she put a handkerchief , all her focus in the write up is all about workings of Mahakavi's mind . Kudos to yadugiri's focus .
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#182  Postby smala » 19 Aug 2011 11:18

"....That does not mean that he composed the song and sang for the first time before yAdugiri's kid. He may have composed much before and perhaps sang that for the 100th time."


Rajesh, since you say "may have composed" - does anyone know for certain, from any of the other writings -- WHEN the song could have been composed ? Or that he could have sung "that for the 100th time ?" This latter statement seems to be too casual, almost irreverent, to such a deep intimate song...

Even though Arasi's translation does not explicitly state anything about the time for this kiLiyE composition, the memoirs have, till now, mostly provided -- contexts and the time -- during which some of the songs were composed.

I would like to believe that the song "may", if you like, have been composed when Yadugiri's baby was present, or maybe, for Yadugiri, or Sakuntala...A belief is that this composition was for parAsakti, imagined as a child! If Yadugiri had passed on the pieces of paper that Bharathi gave her with his songs written on them to her descendants and they still have those treasures -- we may know! Until then, the "may" could work either way - do we know for certain otherwise?
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#183  Postby arasi » 19 Aug 2011 19:35

smala and Rajesh,
I am 'living' with Yadugiri, Bharathi, Chellamma and others now, and in a way, shuttling back and forth (seeing the story as you all do and going further into it for my translation. Add to it an aging mind--which makes me unfit for pinning things down. However, I feel that it was not composed at that moment. Otherwise, Y certainly would have exclaimed saying: on seeing my baby play, Bharathi burst into song. Of course, she would have asked for the written down song--more so because it was about her baby. No. I do' think so. Kannan pATTugaL came earlier, is my guess. Of course, I wait for the experts to chime in.

Rajesh, I don't think the child was a new-born to have been so engaging in its play.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#184  Postby cmlover » 19 Aug 2011 20:13

Though the book says that Bharathi composed the song visualizing parasakthi as a child, it is quite possible that he composed it on the spur of the moment (as an ASu kavi) with Yadugiri's baby. He may have added a few stanzas and polished it later. It appears Bhairvi is a natural raga for the song as has appeared in print
Why should a parasakthi song appear in the Kannan pATTukaL collections? That is an oxymoron!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#185  Postby arasi » 19 Aug 2011 21:43

BharathiyAr's fascination with the tiruvAi mozhi is one reason for his using the word kaNNammA in his poetry. The AzhvArs use it while addressing kaNNan (Ar uLargaLE kaNNammA, aranga mA nagaruLAnE in UrilEn kANi illai is a verse many of us are familiar with).
We do know that Divinity and Nature inspired him. Humanity too. He loved people--and individuals. It's not possible to know the who, how, in which song and so on! Is it written that the inspiration of a song cannot flow into another? The poetic process does not necessarily limit you to one emotional context. It's a sum total of your experiences which it springs from. It's like saying: the violinist was superb, that's what made the vocalist give an inspired tODi. True to some extent, but that's a trigger, but the singer's total experience of the rAgam also comes into play. He or she cannot shut it off.
Another example: we engage in instant, impromptu poetry in the KavidaigaL thread. Even though in that trivial pursuit we come up with a response with a few lines, triggered by the words in the previous verse, we we do not isolate ourselves from the totality of our own poetic instincts and the experiences which happen to be our own. With Bharathi--it would have been impossible for him to create in such a compartmentalized way. Had he been that way, he would have stayed on happily at the ETTayapuram samasthAnam, writing about his employer, leading a comfortable life with Chellamma.
Last edited by arasi on 21 Aug 2011 06:35, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#186  Postby smala » 19 Aug 2011 23:08

"...Otherwise, Y certainly would have exclaimed saying: on seeing my baby play, Bharathi burst into song."

Arasi -

FIVE things I get from these Yadugiri memoirs via your translation :

1) Yadugiri comes across as a *very* modest person in these memoirs - not even her own baby was uppermost for her when she visited Bharathi with her first-born. [Not her marriage, not her reaching puberty, not her conceiving or the birth of her first child!]
2) Further, she lived life loving Bharathi, always holding Bharathi, his ideals, his notions, his thinking, his inspirational songs in much higher esteem than her own self, more than the personal happenings to her.
3) She writes in an impassioned way, never too excited or too agitated or taken in by the moment, regardless of the happenings or how profound the impact may have been!
4) Bharathi, with his regard for Divinity and Nature, but more particularly his deep caring for Humanity, - specifically for those immediately around him - was a man deeply present in his moment so the composition is very very likely to relate to such moments, as we have seen with his other songs! Why discount or deny the context for this kiLiyE song is beyond me!
5) If there was a parAsakti bent/fascination, with songs composed earlier than Yadugiri's recognition, they would still have found mention in her memoirs at some point, even if casually. [I firmly believe parAsakti is a concocted notion and attribution - by folks who compiled his songs, somewhat ill-at-ease with his passionate, intimate compositions vis-a-vis his other compositions, lofty, full of ideals and fervor of a non-personal kind. That he put that same fervor into some personal, intimate songs, is too hard to bear for some folks.]

Given this, I feel she has downplayed Bharathi's singing to her baby, mentioning it casually, and she has not talked of this particular song or its import : -
a) because, while it is a beautiful, intimately worded deeply expressive song to us, in our alienated ways these days ! - to her was just one expressing common-in-those-days sweetness to a child;
b) because, to her, it was not particularly a song expressing svadEsi or women's progressive, or other higher notions from him that seemed to have triggered her imagination to have been so savored - to put it in expressive language! [however, these were memories that lasted long enough to write with contexts in the memoirs, much much later.]

I still feel the way I do re. the birth of the kiLiyE composition. No parAsakti anywhere close !
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#187  Postby arasi » 20 Aug 2011 01:15

smala,
We all are entitled to our viewpoints, and some of what you say rings true to me, but I may not see everything the way you do. It's similar to the way we look at Bharathi's works. How many different interpretations can be given to one particular line!
As you say, Yadugiri was self-effacing perhaps, but from everything that I've read so far, I feel that she was vry expressive and got excited about every new song and it showed! Any mother, however cruel a mother she is (which Y certainly was not!)--even a woman who did not know anything at all about Bharathi's worth as a poet would have said: he made a song specially for my child!
While I don't want to be like the men of his times who went to the trouble of making it all sound kosher--after all, Bharathi was in love with romantic poetry, yet another influence, to the extent that one of his pen names was Shelley dAsan! I do not want to go to the other extreme either to seek clues in everything said or not said by her. Something akin to what modern journalism does--even the papers known for their integrity, at times sinking to the level of the tabloids. To show wart and all--is fine by me, so long as the wart doesn't become the focus and the inspiring subject matter recedes to the background. While I like openness in expression, dealings and in writing (Bharathi was all that!), I am not that keen on digging to the point that the essence of all I seek eludes me in such efforts.
Again, nothing personal, and before anyone else does (aha!) let me put the blame on my not being a spring chicken, if they think I sound 'proper'. Those who have read my poems (not the impromptu jottings on the forum;)) know that I'm not an old-fashioned, conservative old woman!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#188  Postby vasanthakokilam » 20 Aug 2011 01:41

Those who have read my poems (not the impromptu jottings on the forum;)) know that I'm not an old-fashioned, conservative old woman!
I can vouch for that!!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#189  Postby smala » 20 Aug 2011 03:54

Wish I was fascile with Tamil to get into all of the writings on and by Bharathi. I have only tried to go by what seems plausible from my very limited understanding of the man and his works.

Not delving into the why and wherefores for each song and losing the feel or the flow though I'm keenly interested in Bharathi's love poems - I'd say this :

By the same token that Yadugiri might have been more enthusiastic if a song was written for her first-born, my premise holds that had Bharathi been so involved with his imaginative parAsakti as lover or child, we would have heard from Yadugiri. Obliquely, laterally, directly, some way!...there's not as much as a whisper on this trait, on a rather significant set of love poems from Bharathi. In fact he was not even a particularly religious poosari type of man nor a strict adherent to convention himself - one who threw away his brahmin thread!

No more distractions, looking forward to the next segment, Arasi.
Last edited by smala on 21 Aug 2011 10:22, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#190  Postby Pratyaksham Bala » 20 Aug 2011 13:31

FIFTEEN
When my grandmother says: telugu tETa, KannaDa kastUri, aravam advAnam (Telugu is honey, KannaDa precious and Tamizh is useless) ...

என் பாட்டி சொல்லுவார்: 'தெலுகு தேளு, கன்னட கஸ்தூரி, அரவு அத்வானம்' என்று.
It is clear that 'aravu' refers to Tamil language. Is 'aravu' a Kannada word or Telugu word? And what is the meaning of that word?
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#191  Postby Pratyaksham Bala » 20 Aug 2011 17:55

Bharati started moving very closely with 'sAmiyArs' and 'panDArams' at Pondicherry, and spent lot of time singing old 'Sithar' songs and dancing with them at Siddhananda Swami Matam. Bharati was deeply moved and inspired by the traditional 'Sithar' songs. The use of 'அடி' (aDi) and 'கண்ணம்மா' (kaNNammA) by Bharati was the result of the following song, where these expressions are repeatedly used in every stanza.

அழுகணிச் சித்தர் பாடல்

கலித்தாழிசை

மூலப் பதியடியோ மூவிரண்டு வீடதிலே
கோலப் பதியடியோ குதர்க்கத் தெருநடுவே
பாலப் பதிதனிலே தணலாய் வளர்த்தகம்பம்
மேலப் பதிதனிலே --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
விளையாட்டைப் பாரேனோ! 1

எண்சாண் உடம்படியோ ஏழிரண்டு வாயிலடி
பஞ்சாயக் காரர்ஐவர் பட்டணமுந் தானிரண்டு
அஞ்சாமற் பேசுகின்றாய் ஆக்கினைக்குத் தான்பயந்து
நெஞ்சார நில்லாமல் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
நிலைகடந்து வாடுறண்டி! 2

முத்து முகப்படியோ முச்சந்தி வீதியிலே
பத்தாம் இதழ்பரப்பிப் பஞ்சணையின் மேலிருத்தி
அத்தை யடக்கிநிலை ஆருமில்லா வேளையிலே
குத்து விளக்கேற்றி --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
கோலமிட்டுப் பாரேனோ! 3

சம்பா அரிசியடி சாதம் சமைத்திருக்க!
உண்பாய் நீயென்று சொல்லி உழக்குழக்கு நெய்வார்த்து
முத்துப் போலன்னமிட்டு முப்பழமும் சர்க்கரையும்
தித்திக்குந் தேனாமிர்தம் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
தின்றுகளைப் பாரேனோ! 4

பைம்பொற் சிலம்பணிந்து பாடகக்கால் மேல்தூக்கிச்
செம்பொற் கலையுடுத்திச் சேல்விழிக்கு மையெழுதி
அம்பொற் பணிபூண் டறுகோண வீதியிலே
கம்பத்தின் மேலிருந்தே --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
கண்குளிரப் பாரேனோ! 5

எட்டாப் புரவியடி யீராறு காலடியோ
விட்டாலும் பாரமடி வீதியிலே தான்மறித்துக்
கட்டக் கயிறெடுத்துக் கால்நாலும் சேர்த்திறுக்கி
அட்டாள தேசமெல்லாம் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
ஆண்டிருந்தா லாகாதோ! 6

கொல்லன் உலைபோலக் கொதிக்குதடி யென்வயிறு
நில்லென்று சொன்னால் நிலைநிறுத்தக் கூடுதில்லை
நில்லென்று சொல்லியல்லோ நிலைநிறுத்த வல்லார்க்குக்
கொல்லென்று வந்தநமன் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
குடியோடிப் போகானோ! 7

ஊற்றைச் சடலமடி உப்பிருந்த பாண்டமடி
மாற்றிப் பிறக்க மருந்தெனக்குக் கிட்டுதில்லை
மாற்றிப் பிறக்க மருந்தெனக்கு கிட்டுமென்றால்
ஊற்றைச் சடலம் விட்டே --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
உன்பாதஞ் சேரேனோ! 8

வாழைப் பழந்தின்றால் வாய்நோகு மென்றுசொல்லித்
தாழைப் பழத்தின்று சாவெனக்கு வந்ததடி
தாழைப் பழத்தைவிட்டுச் சாகாமற் சாகவல்லோ
வாழைப் பழந்தின்றால் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
வாழ்வெனக்கு வாராதோ! 9

பையூரி லேயிருந்து பாழூரிலே பிறந்து
மெய்யூரில் போவதற்கு வேதாந்த வீடறியேன்,
மெய்யூரிற் போவதற்கு வேதாந்த வீடறிந்தால்
பையூரும் மெய்யூரும் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
பாழாய் முடியாவோ! 10

மாமன் மகளடியோ மச்சினியோ நானறியேன்
காமன் கணையெனக்குக் கனலாக வேகுதடி
மாமன் மகளாகி மச்சினியும் நீயானால்
காமன் கணைகளெல்லாம் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
கண்விழிக்க வேகாவோ! 11

அந்தரத்தை வில்லாக்கி ஐந்தெழுத்தை யம்பாக்கி
மந்திரத்தே ரேறியல்லோ மான்வேட்டை யாடுதற்குச்
சந்திரரும் சூரியரும் தாம்போந்த காவனத்தே
வந்துவிளை யாடியல்லோ --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
மனமகிழ்ந்து பார்ப்பதென்றோ! 12

காட்டானை மேலேறிக் கடைத்தெருவே போகையிலே
நாட்டார் நமைமறித்து நகைபுரியப் பார்ப்பதென்றோ
நாட்டார் நமைமறித்து நகைபுரியப் பார்த்தாலும்
காட்டானை மேலேறி --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
கண்குளிரக் காண்பேனோ! 13

உச்சிக்குக் கீழடியோ ஊசிமுனை வாசலுக்குள்
மச்சுக்கு மேலேறி வானுதிரம் தானேடுத்துக்
கச்சை வடம்புரியக் காயலூர்ப் பாதையிலே
வச்சு மறந்தல்லோ --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
வகைமோச மானேண்டி! 14

மூக்கால் அரும்பெடுத்து மூவிரண்டாய்த் தான்தூக்கி
நாக்கால் வளைபரப்பி நாற்சதுர வீடுகட்டி
நாக்கால் வலைபரப்பி நாற்சதுர வீட்டினுள்ளே
மூக்காலைக் காணாமல் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
முழுதும் தவிக்கிறண்டி! 15

காமமலர் தூவக் கருத்தெனக்கு வந்ததடி
பாமவலி தொலைக்கப் பாசவலி கிட்டுதில்லை
பாமவலி தொலைக்கப் பாசவலி நிற்குமென்றால்
காமமலர் மூன்றும் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
கண்ணெதிரே நில்லாவோ! 16

தங்காயம் தோன்றாமல் சாண்கலக் கொல்லைகட்டி
வெங்காய நாற்றுவிட்டு வெகுநாளாய்க் காத்திருந்தேன்
வெங்காயந் தின்னாமல் மேற்றொல்லைத் தின்றலவோ
தங்காயந் தோணாமல் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
சாகிறண்டி சாகாமல்! 17

பற்றற்ற நீரதிலே பாசி படர்ந்ததுபோல்
உற்றுற்றுப் பார்த்தாலும் உன்மயக்கம் தீரவில்லை
உற்றுற்றுப் பார்த்தாலும் உன்மயக்கந் தீர்ந்தக்கால்
பற்றற்ற நீராகும் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
பாசியது வேறாமோ! 18

கற்றாரும் மற்றாருந் தொண்ணூற்றோ டாறதிலே
உற்றாரும் பெற்றாரும் ஒன்றென்றே யானிருந்தேன்
உற்றாரும் பெற்றாரும் ஊரைவிட்டுப் போகையிலே
சுற்றாரு மில்லாமல் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
துணையிழந்து நின்றதென்ன ? 19

கண்ணுக்கு மூக்கடியோ காதோர மத்திமத்தில்
உண்ணாக்கு மேலேறி உன்புதுமை மெத்தவுண்டு
உண்ணாக்கு மேலேறி உன்புதுமை கண்டவர்க்கும்
கண்ணுக்கு மூக்கடியோ --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
காரணங்கள் மெத்தவுண்டே! 20

சாயச் சரக்கெடுத்தே சாதிலிங்கம் தான்சேர்த்து
மாயப் பொடிகலந்து வாலுழுவை நெய்யூற்றிப்
பொட்டென்று பொட்டுமிட்டாள் புருவத்திடை நடுவே
இட்ட மருந்தாலே --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
இவ்வேட மானேண்டி! 21

பாதாள மூலியடி பாடாணம் தான்சேர்த்து
வேதாளங் கூட்டியல்லோ வெண்டாரை நெய்யூற்றிச்
செந்தூர மையடியோ செகமெல்லாம் தான்மிரட்டித்
தந்த மருந்தாலே --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
தணலாக வேகுறண்டி! 22

கள்ளர் பயமெனக்குக் கால்தூக்க வொட்டாமல்
பிள்ளை யழுதுநின்றால பெற்றவட்குப் பாரமடி
பிள்ளை யழுவாமல் பெற்றமனம் நோகாமல்
கள்ளர் பயமெனக்கே --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
கடுகளவு காணாதோ! 23

பட்டணத்தை யாளுகின்ற பஞ்சவர்கள் ராசாக்கள்
விட்டுப் பிரியாமல் வீரியங்கள் தாம்பேசி
விட்டுப் பிரிந்தவரே வேறு படுங்காலம்
பட்டணமும் தான்பறிபோய் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
படைமன்னர் மாண்டதென்ன ? 24

ஆகாப் புலையனடி அஞ்ஞானந் தான்பேசிச்
சாகாத் தலையறியேன் தன்னறிவு தானறியேன்
வேகாத காலறியேன் விதிமோச மானேனடி
நோகாமல் நொந்தல்லோ --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
நொடியில்மெழு கானேனடி! 25

தாயைச் சதமென்றே தந்தையரை ஒப்பென்றே
மாயக் கலவிவந்து மதிமயக்க மானேனடி
மாயக் கலவிவிட்டு மதிமயக்கம் தீர்ந்தக்கால்
தாயுஞ் சதமாமோ --
என் கண்னம்மா!
தந்தையரு மொப்பாமோ ? 26

அஞ்சாத கள்ளனடி ஆருமற்ற பாவியடி
நெஞ்சாரப் போய்சொல்லும் நேயமில்லா நிட்டூரன்
கஞ்சா வெறியனடி கைசேத மாகுமுன்னே
அஞ்சாதே யென்றுசொல்லி --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
ஆண்டிருந்தா லாகாதோ! 27

உன்னை மறந்தல்லோ உளுத்த மரமானேன்
தன்னை மறந்தார்க்குத் தாய்தந்தை யில்லையடி
தன்னை மறக்காமற் றாயாரு முண்டானால்
உன்னை மறக்காமல் --
என் கண்னம்மா!
ஒத்திருந்து வாழேனோ ? 28

காயப் பதிதனிலே கந்தமூலம் வாங்கி
மாயப் பணிபூண்டு வாழுஞ் சரக்கெடுத்தே
ஆயத் துறைதனிலே ஆராய்ந்து பார்க்குமுன்னே
மாயச் சுருளோலை --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
மடிமேல் விழுந்ததென்ன ? 29

சித்திரத்தை குத்தியல்லோ சிலையை எழுதிவைத்து
உத்திரத்தைக் காட்டாமல் ஊரம்ப லமானேன்
உத்திரத்தைக் காட்டியல்லோ ஊரம்ப லமானால்
சித்திரமும் வேறாமோ --
என் கண்னம்மா!
சிலையுங் குலையாதோ! 30

புல்ல ரிடத்திற்போய்ப் பொருள்தனக்குக் கையேந்திப்
பல்லை மிகக்காட்டிப் பரக்க விழிக்கிறண்டி
பல்லை மிகக்காட்டமல் பரக்க விழிக்காமல்
புல்லரிடம் போகமல் --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
பொருளெனக்குத் தாராயோ ? 31

வெட்டுண்ட சக்கரத்தால் வேண தனமளித்துக்
குட்டுண்டு நின்றேண்டி கோடிமனு முன்னாலே
குட்டுண்டு நில்லாமற் கோடிமனு முன்னாக
வெட்டுண்டு பிணிநீங்கி --
என் கண்ணம்மா!
விழித்துவெளி காட்டாயோ! 32
Last edited by Pratyaksham Bala on 20 Aug 2011 20:59, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#192  Postby rshankar » 20 Aug 2011 18:20

PB, not sure about kannaDA, but IIRC, aravam is the Telugu word for tamizh.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#193  Postby cmlover » 20 Aug 2011 20:53

As I understand the word 'aravam' means 'raucous sound' (கர்ணகடூரம்}
It was coined by the Telugus who were called GULT (derogatory) by the Tamils in the silicon valley during the Y2K days!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#194  Postby kvchellappa » 20 Aug 2011 21:16

The old pontiff of Kanchi Mutt, Paramacharya, has written that Aravam is the name of a border place between Tamilnadu and Andhra and that the language spoken those south of that place was called "aravam' by Telugu speaking people. The 'derogatory' connotation seems imagined.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#195  Postby rshankar » 20 Aug 2011 22:12

cmlover wrote:It was coined by the Telugus who were called GULT (derogatory) by the Tamils in the silicon valley during the Y2K days!
CML y2k is way too late for this coinage. aravam was in use way back when, even before Silicon Valley.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#196  Postby arasi » 20 Aug 2011 22:29

Ravi,
He did not say aravam was. GULT(?) was the word the Silicone valley guys were guilty of!

Chellappa,
Thanks. The word has no prejudice at all (coming from the highest authority). However, advAnam has! Also means barren in usage. example: EdO oru advAnak kATTiRku transfer paNNAdirundAl sari!
Last edited by arasi on 21 Aug 2011 06:37, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#197  Postby arasi » 21 Aug 2011 04:10

EIGHTEEN


kANi nilam VENDum
(A Piece of Land!)


In naLa varusham, in the month of Aippasi, on the eighth (16-11-16), a wednesday, an auspicious day, Bharathi's family moved house.
We were waiting for the rains, and on that day, a storm came, bringing with it the rain. In the afternoon, dark clouds gathered ominously.

Our house was a haven in summer but not so in the rainy season. But for the sunken room in the middle of the two stories, the road-side room and the room with a cradle in it--all other parts of the house got soaked if it rained hard.

We finished dinner at seven and went upstairs. My father, my two sisters and I, with the baby on my lap, sat on two benches. My mother was still downstairs in the kitchen.Heavy rains started in about an hour. We had read in the bhAgavatam of such a rain--the one IndrA had brought about. Now, we saw it with our own eyes. With every thunderbolt, the house shook. The lightening blinded our eyes.

Finger-thick strands of rain came down ceaselessly. One side of our house had a high wall. There was a law against building a wall that high.The owners had obviously ignored it when they built the house. It was an old house and the owner was no more. His wife was keen on collecting the rent but had not kept the house in good repair.

Whenever it thundered, the house shook violently. Around midnight, the wall on the eastern side with glass-paned windows came crumbling down. We were sheltered against the western wall. We were concerned that it might tumble down too. My father said, "If it does, we will all get crushed under it, but I don't think it will come to that, with God's grace."

We were petrified about how my mother was faring downstairs, all alone. There was no way to reach her. The wind blew mercilessly and we couldn't even hear each other in its fury, though we were huddled together. We realized that the back wall of the house was down too. It was horrendous all night.

At dawn, things calmed down and we stirred, and looked around us. On the floor, we saw pictures and the clock crashed to pieces. We hurried downstairs to look for my mother, hoping nothing had happened to her. She was fine and was relieved to see that the storm had spared us all.

After an hour, we opened the front door and saw that a river was flowing in it. About a furlong from us was a big drain and it had flooded. Wherever we looked, we saw fallen trees. Tree limbs were floating in it. Coconut and pUvarasu trees were uprooted. Electric posts and wires were in a sorry state.

Bharathi and Iyer came by and were relieved to see that our family was safe. "Who cares about house and belongings at this hour!", they said.

Iyer: Yadugiri, clean up as much as you can and try to get some food together. The poor are in a pathetic state. We are helping them as much as we can. Please ask your mother not to go the pond to take her customary bath. Corpses are floating around. After things get better, you can go out. Stay indoors!

We stayed in, but my mother went out to bathe. She would not listen to us. Those who were outside, asked her to go back home--"In such chaos, you won't be able to find the pond", they said. It didn't stop her. She did take her dip in the pond and came back home at noon!

The svadESis pooled together all the money they had and then sent Nagaswamy and others to collect more money to relieve the distressed. They gathered all the homeless in one place, treated the injured and took care of the dead. They arranged to cook gruel at Dharamarajan temple to feed them. Other good-hearted townsmen joined the volunteers. They gathered the fallen coconut tree fronds and started weaving panels for roofs. Workmen were herded to build walls for the huts. They made sure that all this work was done without any delay. They allotted work for themselves and helped the workmen.
Even in this calamity, Bharathi's love for Nature did not abate.

The next day, he told us a story: There was an old lady who came to me when I was learning the art of making a roof panel. She said, 'AppEn! My son! My house crumbled, melted in the rain and floated away. Will you rebuild it for me? I can't see very well and I have no one to call my own. Will you build my home up for me? God will bless you!". I asked her where her hut stood. She showed me a mere door frame with no trace of a door, windows or a roof and I laughed out when I saw this 'house'.
She said, "Had you seen my house before the rain and the wind, you would not have laughed but would have said what a beautiful place it was.You laugh now. These bodies of ours have the same fate in store. This wind came as yamA too!
My heart went out to her. She was right. After death, all you see is the skeletal frames of us. I said: Yes, AyA! You will get your house back.
Then we all worked together to build a hut for her.
This incident was published as an essay by Bharathi in the svadESa Mitran the next day.

I saw the meaning of SankarAchAryA's saying all around me--"When mAyA leaves us, then it's the state of nirvANA".

That afternoon, beating their drums, the town criers announced that it would take a month to restore water and electricity. For a week, women and children had to stay indoors. We had to get alternative sources for lights.

The town which was lush with coconut and pUvarasu trees looked like sandy terrain. It took the municipality a month to clear the debris and clean up the streets.

Kalavai Sankara Chettiar moaned: Had they made saplings out of the fallen pUVarasu, they would have grown into trees in four or five years. The municipality wants to plant new trees! What craziness!

After building the huts up, the volunteers found jobs for the poor. The liquor shops had been leveled in the storm and the drunkards of the town looked like normal people.

For nearly a month, gruel was made twice a day at the temple and the poor were well-fed. The svadESis worked as coolies for a month.

Our house was not repaired until after three months. Masons were hard to come by. It was the same with all others. We knew what vana vAsam (forest dwelling) would have been like, during those months of living without the facilities of a town.

In all this, Bharathi was as spirited as joyful as ever. He would do abhinayA to eTTU dikkum SidaRi and mimic the mammoth rain.

After the storm, he went to see all his favorite haunts--the beach, ponds and groves. A small coconut grove with not more than a hundred trees, but for a few fallen trees looked as if the storm hadn't touched it. Seeing that made him thank parASakti for saving a poor man's grove. This song is called pizhaitta tennandOppu. "Even the wind has been kind to a poor man", he exclaimed. We went to see that grove the next day. After Bharathi sang about it, it became the place of a miracle as it were, and crowds of people went to see it and were happy.

At this time, Japan had brought about a new law in their country. Cultivable land was divided equally among its people, to do away with beggars and lazy people. On learning about it, the svadeSis figured out how much land a small Indian family needed to live by. Bharathi sang about it in kANi nilam vENDum.

He also felt that after the age of twenty, the young should live independently and take care of themselves--without being a burden to their parents.



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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#198  Postby smala » 21 Aug 2011 10:19

Finally, mention of parAsakti.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#199  Postby cmlover » 21 Aug 2011 19:52

What is the first line of the song 'pizhaitta tennan thOppu'?
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#200  Postby arasi » 21 Aug 2011 19:56

NINETEEN




VENDumaDi viDudalai
(Yes, Freedom!)


Bharathi and Chellamma thanked parASakti with a celebration for saving us all from the storm. Meena, her sister-in-law, her mother, Padmavathi, her baby Raji, vAdyAr's wife and Bhagyalakshmi Ammal were also invited. After the pUjA, Bharathi sang vandE mAtaram as usual, and then his new poem 'peNmai vAzhgenRu' (victory to womanhood) in an english meTTu (tune). He then asked each of us to sing a song. Meena's mother was reluctant at first about her girls singing.

Bharathi: Let them sing, Amma. You know that there are no strange men in this gathering--just us, who are like your brothers.

Then, Meena's mother asked her daughter and daughter-in-law to sing.

Meena's mother: I didn't realize until now how genuine and open you are! I'm old-fashioned. Men in my younger days, if they asked us to sing, like you did, would gossip behind our backs later. Don't misunderstand me for my refusing at first!

Bharathi: We are not such hypocrites, AmmA. In fact, we want to do away with the enslaving of women. We detest gossiping about them!

Meena's mother: I understand. Oh, are you looking for a match for Thangamma?

Bharathi: Not yet.

Meena's mother: In our days, they would get busy when the girls were eight. Nowadays, even when they're sixteen, people don't seem to bother! Chellamma, don't delay. Find a match for Thangam.

Chellamma: Don't we need money for it, AmmAmi?

Meena's mother: The important thing is to find a boy. Money, you can somehow manage. Don't take me wrong for telling you this.

Chellamma: There's nothing wrong in what you say. My sister is coming from kASi this year. Thangamma is more her daughter than mine. She will not return to kASi without seeing Thangamma married.

It looked to me as though Chellamma was suffering a lot inwardly. BharathiyAr did not seem to be happy either. I could not figure out as to what was ailing them.

My mother was away. I wasn't well-versed in giving the baby an oil bath. I would keep everything ready for Chellamma who came to our house every day at four to give the baby a bath. Then we freshened up and went to the beach. Bharathi came with us sometimes, but it wasn't like old times. He barely sat down with us. Even if he did, they both started arguing. He would walk away and sit alone by the sea but he joined us when we returned home.

The Sivan Temple asked for a bhajanai song for SivarAtri from him. He wrote the song murugA murugA and gave it to them. "If six of you sing it together, it will put you all in a trance", he said.

He was very fond of chanting nammAzhvAr's ten verses at that time, acting it all out that God dwells in every particle of us. He did this by gestures, pointing to the top of his head, his tongue, his chest, shoulders and so on. I did not understand NammAzhvAr's verses very well then. All I could think then was that Bharathi proclaimed that God lived in him, but in reality, he was helpless when it came to driving away the problems he and Chellamma had to cope with.


ivaiyum avaiyum uvaiyum, ivarum avarum uvarum
evaiyum yAvaiyum tannuLLE Agiyum Akkiyum kAkkum
tani mudal emmAn, kaNNapirAn en amudam
Suvaiyan, tiruvin maNALan ennuDai SUzhaluLAnE

(The following is A. K. Ramanujan's translation--Arasi)

The Paradigm

We here and that man, this man, and that other in-between,
And that woman, this woman, and that other, whoever--

Those people and these, and these others in-between,
This thing, that thing, and this other in-between--whichever,

All things dying, these things,
those things, those others in-between,
good things, bad things,
things that were, that will be--

Being all of them, He stands there.


Bharathi was not the same anymore, but my devotion, affection and esteem for him remained the same.
I knew he had changed and that the changes came in rapid succession. It looked as though he was drawn to unwelcome influences. No one could stop him, it seemed. I could see that he was mindless of Chellamma's pleas. When I was a child, I could question him boldly, but I was a mother of a child now. I also realized that I couldn't communicate as freely with him as I did with Chellamma.

Bharathi had a way of looking at everything intently, without batting an eyelid. The glow and the beauty of his eyes were gone now. Chellamma said that it was because he was now given to staring at the sun a lot.

When Bharathi came to our house, he sang vENDumaDi viDudalai in the kIRtanai mode .

Yadugiri: Why have you set the music for this song as in a kIrtanai?

Bharathi: Thangamma says she's not keen on my old tunes any more. She wanted it sung like a traditional kIrtanai. That's why. Do you like it?

Yadugiri: I do.

Bharathi: I'm searching for something new.

Yadugiri: What is it?

Bharathi: I don't want to die. I'm going to find a way to live forever.

Yadugiri: They say miracles are possible, but not this. If you can, that would be the wonder of wonders.

Bharathi: I'm searching and I will find it.

My father happened to hear this. He said, "Bharathi, what's the need for a young woman to get into the realms of vEdAntA? kuruvi talai panangAi pOla (like placing a burden of a palmyra palm fruit on the head of a sparrow to carry around). She can wait until she gets older to ponder over such things."

Bharathi did not answer him. Without saying a word, he got up and went away.

As for me, I kept singing the song 'vENDumaDi viDudalai with the help of the notes* he gave me.



*Yadugiri uses the word kuRippugaL sometimes when she speaks of the copies of the songs that Bharathi gives her. I wonder now if they are notations--Arasi.


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