Monday, November 28, 2005

Immortality - தேடிச் சோறு நிதந்தின்று

Did you think I too will
Spend my days in
search of food,
Tell petty tales,
Worry myself with thoughts,
Hurt others by my acts,
Turn senile with grey hair
And end up as fodder to the
relentless march of time
As yet another faceless man?

Update: Corrected with inputs from Arvind.

தேடிச் சோறு நிதந்தின்று-பல
சின்னஞ்சிறு கதைகள் பேசி-மனம்
வாடித் துன்பமிக உழன்று-பிறர்
வாடப் பலசெயல்கள் செய்து- நரை
கூடிக் கிழப்பருவம் எய்தி - கொடுங்
கூற்றுக் கிரையெனப்பின் மாயும்- பல
வேடிக்கை மனிதரைப் போலே-நான்
வீழ்வேனென்று நினைத்தாயோ


Blogger Ramnath said...

that's good. here is my translation:

"you thought i would fall
like so many comic men
seeking food telling tales
and tumbling in despair
hurting others getting old
then, at last, expire"

i had posted it in my blog earlier - here

12:48 AM  
Blogger swami said...


7:30 AM  
Blogger Chenthil said...

Rams, you have gone for the literal translation. I some how liked "end up as fodder to the relentless march of time" to "expire" :-)

Swami, Thanks.

7:35 AM  
Blogger swami said...

Now that you are discussing content...

"Kodungkoottrukku Irayena.." appdingaradha neenga yen timekku equate panni irukkeenga???

Shouldnt there be some mention of loosetalk by people around you??

Or am I misinterpreting??

Not that I am against you taking that bit of liberty, just want to know if there was a reason to deviate??

5:30 PM  
Blogger Chenthil said...

Swami, Kootru has two meanings - one is speech, proclamation. second is Yama, god of death (I have taken liberty to mention it as march of time). In this context I thougt Bharathi used the second meaning. Only then the chronology is maintained - search for food, loose talk, hurting others, growing old and then dying.

This is the kind of discussion I want in this blog, you are welcome to discuss content.

9:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


"Kodungkoottrukku Irayena PIN MAYUM..". On this note, I think kootru would mean ridiculed. He says irayena PIN, after being fodder to ridicule he succumbs to death. THe word pin seems to give this meaning.

ANother suggestion. HOw about the word petty tales instead of useless tales


10:02 PM  
Blogger Ramnath said...

Chenthil, I agree.

I also liked 'faceless man'. It's actually more apt than 'comic'.

10:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can somebody translate "Nenju Porukkudhillaiyae indha nilai ketta mandarai...". Thanks

11:37 PM  
Blogger Chenthil said...

Arvind, I still think Kootru was used in the sense of death. Will check other sources. You are right, petty tales sounds better. will change it.

Ramz, faceless man is a poem I wrote when I ws young. That phrase has stuck with me for a long time.

Anon, will do

12:48 AM  
Blogger swami said...

Your interpretation is much more appropriate.

I did not know the other meaning of the word Kootru.


11:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I initially typed in this:-
I guess "kootru" is used here more in the sense of ill-talk (I mean a little sinister than "loose talk" or "ridicule"), further emphasized by the usage of "Kodunkootru".

But on the way I realised, you are right!

5:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Healthy discussion...

But i guess "Did you think I too will" can be re-phrased as "Did you think I will"... "TOO" is unneccessary here as the excerpt ends with "yet another"...

"Yet another" conveys it all...

7:36 AM  
Blogger M K Saravanan said...

Wonderful translation of one my favourite stanza in that poem.

-- mks --

11:07 AM  
Blogger Arjun Ravichandran said...

Here is my attempt at a translation. i have to say at the outset itself.. It's really difficult getting the flavor of the original in English..

Searching wearily for food,
Engaged in petty chatter,
Struggling under the burden of worry,
While burdening others with worry as well.
Struggling along down this path,
Until old age and white hair catches up,
Before finally becoming prey to death.

Like the multitude of jokers around me
Did you really think I too would end up defeated like this?

11:09 AM  
Blogger Praise the Humanity said...

'கூற்று' என்றால் 'எமன்'.

9:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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8:22 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...


9:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


2:19 AM  
Blogger Karthik said...

great work chenthil..I am glad I found this blog..

I also agree with Kummu that
kummu said...
'கூற்று' என்றால் 'எமன்'.

so your use of relentless march of time is very appropriate and good one too (in my opinion)

2:52 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Which book contains this poem?? like sivakamien sapatham or Bharathiyar kavithaikal??

2:25 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

ஓ மை காட்

12:48 AM  

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