Old Tamil Poetry

Translations of Tamil Poetic works that span 2000 years

Thirukkural – 1186

Like darkness that lies in wait for lights to cease,
pallor lies in wait for my lover’s hug to ease.

விளக்கு அற்றம் பார்க்கும் இருளேபோல், கொண்கன்
முயக்கு அற்றம் பார்க்கும், பசப்பு.

Her friend asks her the reason for her pallor. She replies, “just like the darkness that waits to engulf once the lights are put out, this pallor lies in waiting to pounce upon me once his embrace eases off me. He has been away for long and I am losing my color because I miss his embrace.” Women suffering from pallor (பசலை, paleness) when separated from their lovers is a repeated motif in Old Tamil literature.

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