Wedding Night – Akananuru 136


136. மருதம்
மைப்பு அறப் புழுக்கின் நெய்க் கனி வெண் சோறு
வரையா வண்மையொடு புரையோர்ப் பேணி,
புள்ளுப் புணர்ந்து இனிய ஆக, தெள்் ஒளி
அம் கண் இரு விசும்பு விளங்க, திங்கட்
சகடம் மண்டிய துகள் தீர் கூட்டத்து,
கடி நகர் புனைந்து, கடவுட் பேணி,
படு மண முழவொடு பரூஉப் பணை இமிழ,
வதுவை மண்ணிய மகளிர் விதுப்புற்று,
பூக்கணும் இமையார் நோக்குபு மறைய,
மென் பூ வாகைப் புன் புறக் கவட்டிலை,
பழங் கன்று கறித்த பயம்பு அமல் அறுகைத்
தழங்குகுரல் வானின் தலைப்பெயற்கு ஈன்ற
மண்ணு மணி அன்ன மாஇதழ்ப் பாவைத்
தண் நறு முகையொடு வெண் நூல் சூட்டி,
தூ உடைப் பொலிந்து மேவரத் துவன்றி,
மழை பட்டன்ன மணல் மலி பந்தர்,
இழை அணி சிறப்பின் பெயர் வியர்ப்பு ஆற்றி,
தமர் நமக்கு ஈத்த தலைநாள் இரவின்,
‘ உவர் நீங்கு கற்பின் எம் உயிர் உடம்படுவி!
முருங்காக் கலிங்கம் முழுவதும் வளைஇ,
பெரும் புழுக்குற்ற நின் பிறைநுதற் பொறி வியர்
உறு வளி ஆற்றச் சிறு வரை திற ‘ என
ஆர்வ நெஞ்சமொடு போர்வை வவ்வலின்,
உறை கழி வாளின் உருவு பெயர்ந்து இமைப்ப,
மறை திறன் அறியாள்ஆகி, ஒய்யென
நாணினள் இறைஞ்சியோளே பேணி,
பரூஉப் பகை ஆம்பற் குரூஉத் தொடை நீவி,
சுரும்பு இமிர் ஆய்மலர் வேய்ந்த
இரும் பல் கூந்தல் இருள் மறை ஔதத்தே.

உணர்ப்புவயின் வாரா ஊடற்கண் தலைமகன் தன் நெஞ்சிற்குச் சொல்லியது.- விற்றூற்று மூதெயினனார்

What He said after a quarrel,remembering his wedding night

Serving in endless bounty
white rice and meat
cooked to turn,
drenched in ghee,
to honored guests,
and when the bird omens were right,
a perfect junction
of Wagon stars with the moon
shining in wide soft lit sky,
wedding site decorated,gods honored,
kettledrum and marriage drum
sounding loud the wedding beat,
the women who’d given her bridal bath
-piercing eyes looking on,unwinking-
suddenly gone,
her near kin
strung a white thread on her
with the split soft backed leaves
of the sirissia,
and with the aruku grass,
its sacred root a figurine,
its buds cool,fragrant,
dark petalled,blue
as washed sapphire,
brought forth by thundering skies
of first rains in valleys
where adolescent calves
feed on them,
they brought her to me
decked in new clothes,
rousing my desire
even in wedding canopy,
wedding noises noisy as pounding rain,
on that first night,
and when they wiped her sweat,
and gave her to me,
she splendid with ornament,
I said to her
who was body now to my breath,
chaste without harshness,
wrapped all over in a robe
new,uncrushed,
“It’s hot.Sweat is breaking out
on that crescent, your brow.
Open your robe a little,
let the wind cool it,”
and even as I spoke,
my heart hasty with desire,
I pulled it off
and stood exposed,
her form shining
like a sword unsheathed,
not knowing how to hide herself,
cried Woy!
in shame,then bowed,begged of me,
as she loosened her hair
undoing the thick colorful wreath
of broken lily petals
and,with the darkness of black full tresses,
hand picked flowers on them
still luring the bees,
hid
her private
parts.

Poet: Virrurru Muteyinanar
Translated by A.K.Ramanujan

They served white rice full of ghee and meat,
perfectly prepared.
Their generosity unbounded,they honored their guests.
As omens fell together favorably,as the sky shone with clear light,
and as the moon came together auspiciously with the wagon constellation,
they readied the marriage house and worshiped the god.
The the great kettle drum roared loud with loud marriage drum;
the girls who had washed her for marriage looked on,
their flower like eyes unwinking,and hid themselves;
and her relatives put on her a white thread
and the cool fragrant buds of the tuber arukai,
whose petals spread dark as polished sapphires
in valleys where large calves
graze on the forked,dull leaves of vakai plants
with soft flowers.
And they made her lovely with pure garments.
Then they came,arousing my desire,
and they gave her to me beautiful with ornaments
and wiped off her sweat
in that enclosure where the sound of marriage was like the rain.
That night she ,her chastity perfect,
as close to me as my body to my life,
covered herself with her still unwrinkled garment.
I said,”Open it just a little
so the breeze can dry the sweat
from your hot forehead,bright as the crescent moon,”
and,my heart full of desire,I pulled off her garment.
Her form exposed glistened like an unsheathed sword,
and she, unable to hide,
took off her bright garland of lilies that held her braids
and covered herself
with darkness of her thick black hair
full of flowers humming with bees,
and, ashamed ,begged and pleaded with me.

Translated by George L Hart

My observations:

Unlike most of the sangam Agam poems , this poem is based on Karpu and not Kalavu. Karpu basically being love after an arranged marriage. In Karpu the women is expected to be chaste and pure. This is can be observed in this poem when the Hero says the women was chaste before he touched her. Whereas in Kalavu, the hero and heroine meet accidentally , fall in love and make love many times before the marriage.

Another observation I could make was how this poem could have been a prelude to the style of describing marriage and wedding night in the Silapadikaram. The auspicious day when stars and the moon meet, the use of two drums,grandly decorated marriage halls and grand feast are some similar elements in the marriage .Sweat between the eyebrows and ornaments and dress as burden in the wedding night are similar elements in Silapadikaram and this poem.

Related links:

Kovalan- Kannagi’s marriage

Kovalan-Kannagi’s wedding night

Please post your comments.

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