Panivilum Malar vanam song and sangam poem – Ainkurunuru 197

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 )

இலங்குவளை தெளிர்ப்ப அலவன் ஆட்டி

முகம்புதை ச்துப்பினள் இறைஞ்ச்நின் றோனே

புலம்புகொள் மாலை மறைய

நலம்கேழ் ஆகம் நல்குவள் எனக்கே.

With her bangles shining and jingling,

She scared off the crabs!

She stood there with her

face lowered (in shyness) and

her face covered by her hair!

Let the lonely evening pass by

She would offer full pleasure of her breast!

Poet: Ammuvanar

Translated by Palaniappan Vairam Sarathy


ஒளிவீசும் வளையல் ஓசையெழுப்ப நண்டை துரத்தி
முகம் கூந்தலின் பின் மறையும்படி தலை குனிந்து அவள் நின்றாலே!
தனிமை வருடும் மாலைப்பொழுது முடிந்தவுடன்
மிகுந்த இன்பத்தைத்தரும் அவள் முலைகளை
எண்ணக்குக் கொடுத்து அருள்வாளே!

The poem speaks of the duality of the girl’s feeling.  Same girl is shy when the guy tries to meet with her in the day time, but offers her self completely in the dark when no one is around.


Ainkurunooru – Translation by P.Jyotimuthu

Learn Sangam Tamil

Tamil Lexicon – University of Madras

Poets of Tamil Anthology – George L.Hart

Poems on Love and War – A.K.Ramanujan



இலங்கு வளை தெளிர்ப்ப அலவன் ஆட்டி,

To shine – bangles – sound  – crab- scare off/play

முகம் புதை கதுப்பினள் இறைஞ்சி நின்றோளே,

Face – bury/hide – hair – bend – she stand

புலம்பு கொள் மாலை மறைய,

Lonely – possess – Evening – disappear

நலம் கேழ் ஆகம் நல்குவள் எனக்கே.

Delightful/beautiful – abundant– breast/Body – would give – for me



  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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