Old Tamil Poetry

Translations of Tamil Poetic works that span 2000 years

Kurunthokai – 73

Her friend says (to make him suffer by not showing up at the nightly rendezvous):

You crave for your lover’s chest;
don’t worry my friend!
Like hostile Kosars*
who raided Nannan’s country
by felling the barrier of mango trees,
a little ruthless scheming too is needed.

*A clan of warriors antagonistic to Chieftain Nannan

தோழி கூற்று:

மகிழ்நன் மார்பே வெய்யையால் நீ;
அழியல் வாழி-தோழி!-நன்னன்
நறு மா கொன்று ஞாட்பிற் போக்கிய
ஒன்றுமொழிக் கோசர் போல,
வன்கட் சூழ்ச்சியும் வேண்டுமால் சிறிதே.

She has promised to meet him in day time. Then changes it to night time. Her friend asks her to not show up during the night time too. Reason? “If you meet him whenever he calls, he will take you for granted. So if you desire to own his broad chest, you need a little ruthless scheming. Like the Kosar warriors who overran Nannan’s country by felling a barrier of mango trees, you have to break his complacency and make him suffer. Only then will he value you better and plan accordingly”

The poem itself talks of her friend asking her to scheme ruthlessly. The ‘no show’ part of it is in the introduction to the poem given by earlier commentaries, derived from palm leaf manuscripts.

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