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

Miscellaneous topics on Carnatic music

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

#26  Postby maduraimini » 08 Jul 2011 08:37

Arasi,
I have been reading your translation of Bharathiyar. Your writing brings him to life. What a generous man, he was! How fortunate Yadugiri was to ask him the doubts she had and to be taught to be a kind,caring person by Bharathiyar himself! Your translation is wonderful and thanks for your dedicated service.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#27  Postby arasi » 08 Jul 2011 08:56

Thanks Srkris, Thanjavooran and maduraimini for your encouragement...
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#28  Postby arasi » 08 Jul 2011 10:17

Continuing Chapter FOUR (see post # 25)

Bharathi: I got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. Two arguments today...
Me: Who was the other one?
Bharathi: Who else? My wife!
Me: What's the point in your celebrating the freedom of women when you indulge in fights with your wife!
Chellamma: Good question, Yadugiri! Ask him if it's fair.
Bharathi: True. But there are times when you cannot interfere.
Me: What happened?
Chellamma: I asked him--if he can walk away, can't I do it too?
Me: Yes, if you have the freedom to do it, she has too.
Bharathi: You are still a child, Yadugiri! It's tough for you to comprehend all this. A wayward bull can be tamed only by placating it first. If you tug at it mindlessly, it will run out of your grasp. I may be able to leave but she has more responsibilities.
Me: You talk to me in riddles. What did happen?
Bharathi: You tell her, Chellamma. That way, you can unburden yourself.
Chellamma described the incident.
Me: Oy Bharathiyare, you think you love the children more than Chellamma does?
Bharathi: I didn't say that. Yes, we both love them but she's the nurturer and I'm the bread winner. I don't need any rules about how to go about my responsibilities.
Me: Then, Chellamma, you can cook whenever you feel like it!
Bharathi: No Yadugiri. It's not like that at all. Whatever we do, we have to do it well and we have to be understanding.
Chellamma: You say that I am not understanding?
Bharathi: Don't underestimate yourself. Your prodding helped. I've already sent the story to the printers!
Chellamma: I don't like to hear women complain abut their husbands.I get annoyed at them. Yet, there's a limit to everything. When you cannot bear it anymore, you feel like crying to an inanimate door even!
Bharathi: All that prodding this morning has resulted in productive work, after all. Come, let's all go to the beach!

The things that Bharathi spoke about at the beach that evening is something all the people of our land should know about.
Bharathi said: You women work hard at home, wearing yourselves out. It's a sin to look upon you without any respect. You bring up children. You carry out your responsibilities faithfully and are there for us when we need you.
We do not live in old times. Things are changing. If children are irresponsible, we have to guide them, not force or control them.
Yet, Chellamma was right. My kavidaip paiththiyam (Muse) possessed me. In the heat of things, arguments came about. We have tangak kiLis (golden parrots) for children, though we are not rich enough to adorn them with gold.
A poet's poverty is legendary. Tamizh has lost its prestige and pride. If we celebrate the tamizhk kuzhandai Lakshmi, grace will come to us. If the vITTuth thalaivi (the mistress of the house) runs the household in harmony and if the vITTuth thalaivan (the master of the house) can live a happy and healthy life, he will do all that she bids. What the thalaivi needs is some money. My Chellamma is capable of ruling the world, if only she had the means. The lack of it makes her ask me, fight with me. EVen after dealing with all this, she is there to feed me.
The one who thinks of the past is a fool. As we wash and dry our clothes every day, we should get rid of our own ills and troubles that way too. Just as the Sun rises every morning, we should see everything anew and rejoice.
Chellamma is my life, my treasure. She's bhAgya Lakshmi...
The land of the Tamizh people should know about Bharthi's angst. Supporting poets is one of the nation's responsibilities. Had we protected Bharathi from such heartaches, he would have lived a little longer...
Who knows of God's ways!

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

#29  Postby cmlover » 08 Jul 2011 19:50

All things seem to happen in front of our eyes. It is all too natural. Unless Yadugiri had kept notes she could not write the 'dislogues' so realistically. Let us have a time-line and also get the age of Yadugiri during those events. She seems to be intimately connected with B's family. Is it true? Her daughter can answer that question! Perhaps Ponbhhairavi and PB can comment on the location where all these events took place. B's house at Puduvai is a national monument (I guess..).
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#30  Postby arasi » 08 Jul 2011 20:28

CML,
I have a feeling she was not sure about the format in which she had to put it all on paper. After all, she wasn't a writer and it was 1937-1938 when she wrote this! How modern it is for those days, I wondered. Then again, it goes with her personality and the world she lived in as a child. She was a full-fledged homemaker herself, and I wonder how she found the time to write all this. She felt impelled, I would think. There were hardly any biographies in Tamizh those days for her to have a guideline as to how to present the life of someone she knew and adored--a giant like Bharathi at that. Complex subject. You and I remember the popular stories vai mu kO (Kothanayaki Ammal) wrote around that time into the forties (her family ran the Jaganmohini press). How sentimental and soap opera-ish those stories were!
I read Yadugiri Ammal's book years ago. Now, I am reading it chapter by chapter as I translate it (to put myself in the reader's place so that it's as if I'm reading it with you all).
Yes, I wanted to know about the locales in Puducheri from PB and PB. Is Gowrla St rue de la Guerre? There was a mayor at one time by the name Guerre too. Did the locals use corrupt forms of French (like Hamilton Bridge morphing into AmbaTTan vArAvadi in Chennai)? I did not want to raise all these questions as I was writing. In this chapter, she employs the dialogue form instead of giving a gist of what she 'heard' about the incident at first. Since I am following every line of hers in my translation, i did not touch it.
Now, imagine this in a conversation: Yadugiri! Don't write your book about BharathiyAr in the third person all along. Throw in some dialogue. Yes, that way, it will be more personal. I don't think she was very conversant with English either to read books written in it.
Since I do not remember (from my reading the book a dozen years ago), I have no clue if her father was still there to guide her. As the story progresses, we will know. Anyhow, in the thirties, for a married woman with children to bring up (joint family too?), it would not have been an easy task to write even a few lines, a chapter--let alone a book!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#31  Postby rshankar » 08 Jul 2011 21:49

Arasi they way you translate, you create three very distinct protagonists - the precociously probing yet precious Yadugiri, the stoic Chellamma who was so anchored in the practical aspects of life that formed the perfect conterpoint to bhAratiyAr's soaring imagination and searing intellect, and the mahAkavi himself. His clarity of thought come through unambiguously in every incident narrated; he answers Yadugiri in all seriousness and doesn't appear in the least bit patronizing (as many others of his intellect are wont to be with 'lesser' mortals, especially children!). And in the final chapter you've translated so far, his love for Chellamma shines forth. What a man!

By the way, I wonder if Sri Rajkumar Bharati's daughter still reads this forum...it will be wonderful to get the family's perspective as well.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#32  Postby arasi » 08 Jul 2011 23:46

Ravi,
I was thinking about her too!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#33  Postby arasi » 09 Jul 2011 03:00

FIVE


mUnRu kAdal
(Three Loves)


As on every Thursday, the band played in front of the statue of Dupleix for about an hour. The white kids danced around the band and that was a lovely thing to watch.
Bharathiyar did not like crowds that much. He led us away to the beach.
Thangam(ma): Appa, this music sounds strange. They play at such a high pitch. Is it possible for us to sing at that pitch? If we can, you think it's going to sound pleasant?
Bharathi: This music is very different from our music. It quickly jumps from low pitch to the high. In our music, we go up as if we climb the stairs, and descend the same way. They sing one note in the kIzhk kAlam and then they go up abruptly.
Thangam asked again: Appa, if we sing that way, do you think it will sound pleasing?
Bharathi: It depends on how you sing it.
Thangam: It's Sarasvati pUjai tomorrow. Appa! Teach us a song in this tune!
Bharathi: Yes, you can have a song in this tune.
The band started playing a new tune.
I said, "We can sing about Lakshmi in this tune?"
Bharathi said, "Why not? "
Chellamma: In Calcutta and kASi, they worship kALi. If you sing on Shakti, all our troubles will come to an end.
The band then played four lines in kIzh sthAyi and four in mEl sthAyi notes.
Bharathi: Chellamma, what you all say sounds good. Thangamma asked for a song about Sarasvati, Yadugiri wanted something on Lakshmi and you want one about kALi. I will sing on all the three of them tomorrow.
Thangamma: Appa, three songs in three different rAgams? You sing your verses in noNDich chindu, kAvaDich chindu,Anandak kaLippu and tunes in which the ANDis (mendicants) sing. I think I'm going to like a song where each verse is in a different rAgam!
Bharathi: You tell me how you want me to tune them.
Thangamma: We like the tunes this band plays!
It was mOOla nakshtram the next day. Some celebrate Sarasvati pUjA on that day (as we do in our house) and others on MahA navami day. We had a small kolu (dolls display for navarAtri) and we were just finishing our singing and were nearly ready for the finale,the Arati--when Bharathiyar arrived.
He said, "I'm going to sing for your kolu and you can observe your shAstrams afterwards."
We all sat down in a row, eager with expectation.
As he had promised us, Bharathi sang a verse about Sarasvati, Lakshmi and KALi, starting with the line 'piLLaip pirAyattilE'. These verses are known as mUnRu kAdal. He sang them in sarasvati manOhari, sri rAgam and in punnAga varALi.
We were thrilled to hear him sing our requests!
I think we can get a glimpse of Bharati's life in this song...
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#34  Postby arasi » 09 Jul 2011 04:03

SIX


Sentamizh nADenum pOdinilE
(By the mere mention of my great land's name...)

Some Sangam (institution) in Chennai had announced in the papers, a contest and prizes for the best poems about our land.The cash prizes were three hundred, two hundred and one hundred rupees for the winners. We were all very keen that Bharathi should enter the contest.
He agreed. He composed Sentamizh nADenum pOdinilE and sent it away. Each word in that poem is worth a lakh of rupees (akshara laksham). Why? For each one of those ten verses, he should have been awarded ten crores, ten lakhs, ten thousand--at least a thousand? The Chennai sangam placed him third among the winners and sent him a hundred rupees. It didn't worry Bharathi. Va ve su was most upset. "Neither of the other winning poems were worth a line of Bharathi's poem which has sweetness, chandam, finesse and depth of meaning", he moaned. "They are poles apart from Bharathi's verse (malaikkum maDuvukkum uLLa vityAsam). They are like strewn flowers (the words), no strand binding them together! This land does not know the value of great poetry!"
Bharathi: As if you didn't know! They would have decided on the winners even before they announced the contest. All this is just for public display. Why do you rue? It's just our luck!
Iyer's constant regret was that there wasn't a figure in our times like RamanujA who spread the poetry of the AzhwArs--a giant like him to popularize Bharathi's poetry and to bring him into prominence.
Iyer nevertheless was thrilled when Bharathi's songs got popular, at least after his death--that the third prize winning song was heard in every corner of tamizh nADu, in several different rAgAs at that. There is no trace of the other two songs or the poets--the first and second prizes winners...

(The second part of this chapter continues...)
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#35  Postby smala » 09 Jul 2011 04:52

Bharathi's life narrated through your dignified translation, Arasi, underscores the fact that there are so so many unknown, unsung geniuses that languished (and still languish) especially in a British India when neither talent nor the arts were suitably encouraged. But then the world over some have been "discovered" only after they've been gone. There is an element of sadness in the narrative - that Yadugiri the sensitive child felt and expressed as she wrote.

It seems corruption and nepotism prevailed even during the great bard's times...when he says "They would have decided on the winners even before they announced the contest. All this is just for public display."... while he was an idealist, a romantic visionary, and even as he towered above them all he was equally aware of mundane practicalities in life, it seems.

How many children did Bharathi have and their names? Is there anything known about each of them and their descendants? Maybe P.Bala can access some library materials in Puducheri to share and add to this touching tale of a sensitive genius?
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#36  Postby rshankar » 09 Jul 2011 05:49

I have reached out to Vidya (Sri Rajkumar Bharati's daughter) and asked her to add in details as well as post her dad's reactions....I can't wait!
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#37  Postby rshankar » 09 Jul 2011 05:52

We discussed piLLai pirAyattilE earlier - here's the link.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#38  Postby arasi » 09 Jul 2011 07:50

SIX
Continued from Post # 34


Around this time, we lost my little brother. He was just two. It was a stomach ailment. The medicines did not work. My father was broken-hearted. Losing money in the svadESi ship venture, the banning of his beloved journal India and all the atrocities of the British government had not shaken him. He was brave. The loss of his little child shook him up. He became weak. To divert his mind, Va ve su and Bharathiar spent most of their time with my father, conversing with him and playing chess. They will all go to Arabindo's house in the evening to discuss the VEdAs and upanishads, returning home at ten or eleven.
On the day my baby brother died, they buried him and returned home. Bharathi was perturbed. He pleaded with dEVi for a boon.
He wrote nalladOr vINai SEidE (under the heading kETpana) and sang it to the children.
My mother got sick with grief. The medicines did not work and they tried to heal her with herbal medicine. To get her out of the house, Chellamma and the children took my mother to a kuzhAik kiNaRu (huge well fitted with a giant tap--like a shower) called pATALa gangai to bathe. On some days, we left early at six and had our oil baths.
Chellamma insisted that my mother should join us every evening to spend some time by the sea. We were at the beach until nine at night.
Va ve su kept my father company. On a cardboard chess board, they played with chess pieces which were made out of cardboard again, with the first letter of the piece's name printed on them. My father ailed from headaches and chest pain. Iyer and Bharathi stayed by him.
One evening, we left for Villianur to bathe in the river. It was on the day of a festival at the temple. ArudrA dariSanam? A lad called Swaminathan came with us as our guide. We stayed at his relative's home there. The next morning, we bathed in the river, looked round the place and had lunch there. Around two in the afternoon, we engaged a cart and left for Puduchery. The wheel of the cart broke when we were three miles away from home and we could not find another cart. The maid carried my baby sister Ranganayaki and we walked home, chatting all the way.
Bharathiyar was surprised that Chellamma could walk all the three miles. After that day, if Chellamma ever complained about aching legs, he would tease her by asking, "enna Chellamma? Did you go all the way to see ArudrA dariSanam?"
Those were the times when the two families were together all the time. Six more months went by, with pAtAla gangai in the morning, and evenings at the beach.
About this time, Astronomy became a craze among us. There was a telescope in Puduchery. It was available to anyone who wanted to look through it at the skies.
This is how we spent our time...


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

#39  Postby rshankar » 09 Jul 2011 09:46

How wonderful to see the camaraderie between these families! I have a question - were little children not cremated?
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#40  Postby rajeshnat » 09 Jul 2011 10:28

rshankar wrote:Arasi they way you translate, you create three very distinct protagonists - the precociously probing yet precious Yadugiri, the stoic Chellamma who was so anchored in the practical aspects of life that formed the perfect counterpoint to bhAratiyAr's soaring imagination and searing intellect, and the mahAkavi himself.


rshankar
Very beautifully expressed and to an extent I can say arasi = (chellamA + yadugiri + mahakavi ) /3 , a rare blend .Arasi must have started as a yadugiri , moved on as a chellamma not losing yadugiri's psyche and all along developing the mahakavi passion within her. :clap:

I am assuming yadugiri must have written a small journal when she was growing up , recollecting all her days in every day basis and then used that journal to pen the book when she was in her thirties.

Just a small digression, keep moving Arasi.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#41  Postby smala » 09 Jul 2011 11:06

AFAIK, infants and children up to a certain age (five? seven ? ) are buried, not cremated, among Hindus - brahmins and others as well.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#42  Postby arasi » 09 Jul 2011 19:47

Ravi,
smala is right. The expression is: kuzhip piLLai--the one you have lost as an infant who was interred.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#43  Postby arasi » 09 Jul 2011 20:03

Rajesh,
We do not know if Yadugiri kept a journal. Possible. A diary was not an uncommon thing in those days. Her father was a publisher which means she had an access to (was given?) one. I have a feeling the family would have beenthe source to cross check her memory about her childhood days and events--to fill in the blanks about certain happenings. More than that, she would have heard the elders in the family talk about their days in Puduvai and about Bharathi and other friends of the family all the time..
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#44  Postby cmlover » 09 Jul 2011 20:16

Has bharathy mentioned Yadugiri anywhere in his poems or biography?
It appears she was quite close to him and chellamma...
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#45  Postby arasi » 10 Jul 2011 00:03

CML,
Didn't every person who came into his life mean something to Bharathi? I'm going through two more chapters now--and so have read up more pages than you all have. Ofcourse, he adored Yadugiri because she comes across like a very special child. Bharathi loved all the children, without thinking that only his own were special ones. We all know that a child's innocence and sense of wonder is something worth worshipping. Chellamma, Yadugiri, Thangamma, Shakunthala and all the good women around him inspired him when he wrote about Shakti, KaNNan and other dieties. Nature inspired him no end. So, my guess is that he did not have to write songs individually in praise of those who loved him and were loved by him. They were his inspiration for writing in another way too. They demanded songs of him! He did pen songs about his heroes. That we know.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#46  Postby arasi » 10 Jul 2011 04:31

SEVEN

PeNgaL viDudalai
(Freedom for women)


On the morning of the festive day of mASi Magam, women, men and children of our families went to the beach to take a holy dip in the sea when PerumAL Himself--the utsava mUrthi idol from the VishNu temple was at the beach to have a bath in the sea. It is a beautiful sight to see in Puducheri.
That evening we were playing at the beach and Bharathiyar came around with little Shakunthala in tow who is the same age as my sister Ranganayaki. They both loved to play together.
Shakunthala: What did you have for lunch?
Ranganayaki: kottavaraikkAi (cluster beans) kaRiyamudu (vegetable), coconut and curd pachchaDi and paruppup pAyasam (dessert).
Shakunthala: What's so special today?
Ranganayaki: We bathed in the sea, worshipped PerumAL and ate dessert.
Shakunthala: What festival, you think?
Ranganayaki: I don't know!
Shakunthala: Silly you! It's mAsi Magam today! MAsi Magam!
Listening to all this, Bharathi burst out laughing. Then he said: Come here, little ones! You both speak like sweet parrots. One a golden parrot and the other an iron parrot! Who will be which?
Shakunthala: I'm the golden parrot! RangA is the iron parrot.
RangA: I'm the golden parrot, she's the iron one!
Shakunthala: No, it can't be! It was ' my' father who asked us to choose!
Ranga: Let's not fight over this. Both of us can be thangak kiLis (golden parrots)!
Bharathi was exultant. He picked RangA up and went to my father. "I spoke mindlessly, hurting the children's feelings and this little one of yours set everything straight!"
From that day on, Bharathi called RangA thangak kiLi.
Ranga said to my father, "I was right. We both are fair of complexion." Then she turned to Bharathi and asked him: Why don't you pick Shakunthala up too?"
"Come, Shakunthala!" said Bharathi, beckoning to her. "Ranga has turned you into a golden parrot!"
Shakunthala said, "I won't come. If you want, you can come and pick me up!" Bharthi hoisted her up and then put her down so that the children could continue their play.
I finished doing my homework. Then Bharathi asked: Do you want to hear about this hilarious incident which happened this morning? After the festival, I thought lunch was going to be late and thought it was a good idea to take the children to an eatery (hOTTal) when we left the beach. Shakunthala ate like a good girl. Thangamma made a big fuss. "I just had a holy dip in the sea and will not drink at this echcil (polluted) table! I asked the waiter to bring a maNai (plank) for her to sit on the floor and to bring some iDlis. The waiter brought water in a glass and Thangamma refused it saying, too many others have sipped from it. The waiter brought water again in a bell metal tumbler (from which one can drink without the utensil touching one's lips). By this time, the idlis were cold. He brought fresh iDlis again. The eyes of the customers were all on Thangamma. When we came out of the hOTTal, I asked her: ennamma? Why all that drama? I don't want to take you out to an eatery again. Are you an old lady to observe all this maDi (sticking to strict religious codes)? Thangamma replied: Do I have to be an old woman to say I won't drink from a glass which so many others have sipped from? I felt sick in my stomach when I saw the man put all the dirty glasses into a tub to rinse them. I would have happily gone hungry, waited an hour for the meal. I wouldn't have died! He even dropped a glass in it which a leper drank from. These eating places are very dirty. My periamma (aunt) shuns even a piece of jack fruit sold in the bazaar. The fruit has to be cut at home. She would not have approved of this place at all! What Chellamma cooks is fine by me. I think that's the healthy way to be.
Yadugiri: Thangam is not used to hOTTals. Our mother says we can't even buy the cashew and cardomom candy from the hOTTal.
Bharathi: Let grownups be the way they want to be. Children needn't follow such restrictions!
Yadugiri: Isn't it good to cultivate good habits when you are young?
Bharathi: I shouldn't take Thangam to eateries anymore.
Yadugiri: I think what she said was sensible. We needn't drink from a glass contaminated by a leper, those with sores or a man with tuberculosis.
Bharathi: I can't win. You are Thangam's advocate!
Yadugiri: Then, explain it to me. I won't argue.
Bharathi. It was all very well, their laying down the rules in ancient days. It's wrong when you do it on the basis of caste. A brahmin could be afflicted with tuberculosis and that's fine by them. A SUdrA--he's strong and healthy--and it's a taboo to eat with him?
Here's something that happened on the train the other day. It was a small compartment and we were only three of us in it. Myself and a young couple. The husband and I were conversing.The young woman didn't say a word. The man got down at a station to get some coffee. The woman tuned to me and started asking me about my whereabouts, family and so on, and the moment the husband appeared, she turned mute. Then I got down to get some betel leaves and when I got into the train, I found them chatting away merrily. Seeing me, she was silent again! What kind of tradition is this? It all seemed so stupid. I felt like giving them a lecture on it but I restrained myself.
Yadugiri: Yes, it's like being a slave. She does not have the freedom to talk to others when the master is around. She could not contain herself when he went away. So she spoke to you.
Bharathi: Some slave! I would have said something, but didn't want to stir things up.
Yadugiri: Once this changes, women can interact with others without fear. Now they walk in the streets with their heads bent down, not being able to look up even at cattle and carts which come from the opposite direction!
Bharathi: I'm going to write a long article about freedom for women. I will write poems about it.
Yadugiri. Will that mean that freedom will come to women?
Bharathi: Listen, the old rules are of no use now. Other nations have marched ahead of us now. We have stayed behind because women have been enslaved.
Yadugiri: I would say that this nation has been stable because of women. Men wear vESHTis manufactured by mills while women wear saris woven by hand. Habits, traditions, festivals, poetry, history, purAnams and ethical works have all been preserved only because of women. Where is there the time for you English pundits, to take care of all this?
Bharathi: BhalE! You have swallowed every word of what Iyer said in his speech! As for me, I don't mind losing an argument to a child. It's a matter of pride for a guru to lose an argument to his student. There are many instances of it in our history.
Yadugiri: Please don't forget to make up a song for us in a new tune for our shObhanam dance!
Bharathi: Thangamma asked for a song for kummi today. You ask for one now. You both will have it tomorrow.
The song he brought to us the next day was: peNgaL viDudalai peTRa magizhchchigaL( The joys of women attaining freedom)

* * * * *
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Last edited by arasi on 10 Jul 2011 23:49, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#47  Postby PUNARVASU » 10 Jul 2011 06:17

"Bharathi: BhalE! You have swallowed every word of what Iyer said in his speech! As for me, I don't mind losing an argument to a child. It's a matter of pride for a guru to lose an argument to his student. There are many instances of it in our history."

I am reminded of the following subhASita:

युक्तियुक्तं वचो ग्राह्यं बालादपि शुकादपि ।
युक्तिहीनं वचस्त्याज्यं वृद्धादपि शुकादपि ॥
Whatever is consistent with right objective reasoning should be accepted even if it comes from a boy or a parrot, and whatever is not, should be rejected even if it comes from an old man or the great sage Śrī Śuka himself.
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#48  Postby arasi » 10 Jul 2011 07:30

Thank you Punarvasu for bringing this...
What a beauty it is. Just like you to find it! I have a feeling Bharathi knew this verse too ;)
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#49  Postby Ponbhairavi » 10 Jul 2011 16:03

I have just now gone through this thread that too cursorily.( Since last week i have some eye problem). it is a very good thing that portions of bharathi,s biography are being reconstructed from the scripts of the kids with whom he shared some moments.I am not able at present to clarify readily about the gowrla street. certainly it must be a mispronunciation of some french name.It is very unlikely to be guerre. I will think it over. some streets in the vicinity of beach still keep their old french namesIt will be helpful if you give exactly waht she has written in Tamil script. some poems of bharathi are being referrred in the context of their creations It is my opinion that Arasi should translate those poems also. tamil literature can get world recognition only if it is translated into english. The few pages of Arasi in english are much more useful contribution than many volumes written in tamil. We should showcase the greatness of these poems also which is more important than his biography from a literary angle.
rajagopalan
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Re: Oy BhAratiyArE!--A Child's Eye View of the Poet

#50  Postby cmlover » 10 Jul 2011 19:38

arasi
These frank discussions between Bharathy and the children are eye-openers revealing candidly his personailty which is consistent with his poems. As we read some of his poems we can see the inspirations from these kids. Yadugiri apparently played a vital role for stimulating his thought processes. Though your translations are superb I wish I could read the original in Tamil. This book must be published by the TN Govt and some segments included in school texts instead of the 'poisonous' texts injected by the DMK in the garb of 'Samaccheer Kalvi'. How old was yadugiri when these events tookplace? If it is not mentioned make an educated guess....
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