Old Tamil Poetry

Translations of Tamil Poetic works that span 2000 years

Thiruppavai – 8

Light appears in Eastern sky, setting it ablaze;
Buffaloes amble to small patches of field to graze;
We held back other girls who were itching to go,
And are here to pick you up, at your door;
Oh’ favourite of Krishna, wakeup! If we praise him,
the Lord who broke open the jaw of horse shaped demon,
the Lord who felled wrestlers sent to kill him,
the Lord of Lords, and go worship him,
he will look at us, have pity and bestow his grace, my friend!

கீழ்வானம் வெள்ளென்று எருமை சிறுவீடு
மேய்வான் பரந்தனகாண் மிக்குள்ள பிள்ளைகளும்
போவான்போ கின்றாரைப் போகாமல்காத்துஉன்னைக்
கூவுவான் வந்துநின்றோம் கோதுகலம் உடைய
பாவாய் எழுந்திராய் பாடிப் பறைகொண்டு
மாவாய் பிளந்தானை மல்லரை மாட்டிய
தேவாதி தேவனைச் சென்றுநாம் சேவித்தால்
ஆவாவென்று ஆராய்ந்து அருளேலோர் எம்பாவாய்.

“The sky has lightened in the East. Buffaloes are out to graze. All other girls are up and  ready to go to his temple to worship him. We have held them back, saying let’s all go together, and have come to your doorstep to wake you up. You are the favourite of Krishna, my friend! Wake up now.

When a demon called Kesi took the form of a horse and attacked him, Krishna broke its jaw open. He felled the wrestlers sent to kill him. He is the Lord of the Lords. If we sound our drums, sing his praise and go worship him, he will look at us, have pity on us and bestow his grace on us. So wake up and join us, my friend”


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