Panivilum Malar vanam song and sangam poem – Ainkurunuru 197


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This is an old post which I am updating now . Recently when I was hearing the song ‘ Panivilum Malarvanam ‘ from Ninaivellam Nithya, two lines from the song made me think how a Sangam poem could have been an inspiration to the lyricist or rather how this particular theme has lasted 2000 years and has been carried over to us.

The lines are ‘ Selai moodum ilan solai … Maalai soodum malar maalai’ which means ‘ the orchard which is covered by the saree would be my garland in the evening..’ . The poet implies that that shy girl who covers her breast with saree in the morning would offer her breast to the hero in the night. This theme is very similar to the motif of the Sangam poem I have given below.The lyricist is none other than  Vairamuthu. Already in this blog I have posted how he has embedded sangam poem lines in his Narumugaye song in Iruvar.(Link to blog https://karkanirka.wordpress.com/2009/03/29/kurunthokai-40/ )

இலங்குவளை தெளிர்ப்ப அலவன் ஆட்டி

முகம்புதை ச்துப்பினள் இறைஞ்ச்நின் றோனே

புலம்புகொள் மாலை மறைய

நலம்கேழ் ஆகம் நல்குவள் எனக்கே.

I am posting two translations of the same poem,
Her bangles jingling,
she stood kicking at a crab,
her head lowered,
her face hidden by her hair.
But soon as evening with its loneliness has gone,
she will give her breasts
with all her loveliness.

Thinai – Neytal

Poet – Ammuvanar

Translated by George L.Hart

……

My love whose bangles

glitter,jingle,

as she chases crabs,

suddenly stands shy,

head lowered,

Hair hiding her face:

but only till the misery of the evening

passes,when she’ll give me

the full pleasure

of her breasts.

Translated by A.K.Ramanujan

Gorge L Hart has tried to be as close to the original as possible with his translation, whereas A.K.Ramanujan’s translation tries to bring the exact feeling the poet wanted to describe. No wonder A.K.Ramanujan is considered one of the best Translators in the world !(surely I am not questioning the greatness of Gorge L Hart…but even Mr. Hart will accept how great a translator A.K.Ramanujan is!). Infact as Mr.Hart quotes ‘I have been helped immeasurably by A.K.Ramanujan, who was not only my first Tamil teacher,but who has provided invaluable insights and suggestions.’

‘A.K.Ramanujan,my first Tamil teacher,whose wonderful translations and insights first led me to realize the profoundity and importance of Tamil anthologies.’  in preface of his two books.

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2 thoughts on “Panivilum Malar vanam song and sangam poem – Ainkurunuru 197

Add yours

  1. Sanagaththu kavithaikaL seyyulkalaai ninru engalai thuraththi adiththu vittana. Ungal ponrorin eluththukkal engalai nerungi varach seykirathu. thamilil type seythirunthal innum nerukkamayirukkum.

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