Old Tamil Poetry

Translations of Tamil Poetic works that span 2000 years

Archive for the category “Padhinen Keel Kanakku”

Thirukkural – 1260

Is it possible for those whose heart melts like lard placed on fire –
To say we’ll feign anger when our lover gets intimate?

நிணம் தீயில் இட்டன்ன நெஞ்சினார்க்கு உண்டோ-
புணர்ந்து ஊடி நிற்பேம் எனல்?

She’s angry with him, but when he gets intimate she can’t help mellowing down. Though she wants to feign anger, it is impossible for her as her heart melts like fat placed on fire.

நிணம் – fat /lard
புணர்தல் – get close / intimate
ஊடல் – tiff

Thirukkural – 611

Thinking task at hand is hard, one shouldn’t give up;
Untiring effort will give the strength needed.

அருமை உடைத்து என்று அசாவாமை வேண்டும்;
பெருமை முயற்சி தரும்.

One shouldn’t give into inactivity thinking that the task at hand is hard to do. The efforts put in will give the strength needed to complete the job.

There’s an ambiguity in the second line. If you read பெருமை as power / might , then ‘effort put in will give the strength needed’. If you read பெருமை as Laurel, then ‘effort put in will bring laurels’.

அருமை – difficulty
அசா‌ – idleness, lethargy
பெருமை – strength

Thirukkural – 191

One who utters drivel to anger learned men,
will be mocked by every one.

பல்லார் முனியப் பயன் இல சொல்லுவான்
எல்லாரும் எள்ளப்படும். 

Thiruvalluvar advises one to not talk rubbish. While this angers wise men in the community, he will be mocked and derided by all.

பல்லார் – learned men (in this context)
முனிதல் – to anger
பயன் இல – useless
எள்ளல் – reproached / mocked

Thirukkural – 1127

As my lover resides forever in my eyes,
I won’t even line them, lest he vanish.

கண் உள்ளார் காதலவராக, கண்ணும்
எழுதேம், கரப்பாக்கு அறிந்து.

She keeps thinking him constantly when he is not with her. She says since he resides in my eyes non stop, I won’t even line my eyes as I cannot not see him even for that short duration.

கண்ணுள்ளார் காத லவராகக் கண்ணும்
மெழுதேங் கரப்பாக் கறிந்து.

கரப்பு – hide
அறிந்து – எண்ணி – thinking

Thirukkural – 1123

O’ pupil of my eye, make way!  – fair browed girl
whom I fell in love with, has no place to stay!

கருமணியின் பாவாய்! நீ போதாய்-யாம் வீழும்
திருநுதற்கு இல்லை, இடம்!.

After spending time with him, she is leaving. He doesn’t want her to leave. He wants her image to stay in his eyes forever. So he asks the pupil in his eyes to go away and give space to the fine fore-headed girl with whom he is in love.

கருமணியுட் பாவாய்நீ போதாயாம் வீழுந்
திருநுதற் கில்லை யிடம்.

கருமணி – eye
பாவை – pupil
வீழும் – whom I fall for
திருநுதல் – திரு + நுதல் –  beautiful forehead

Thirukkural – 423

Whatever words we hear, uttered by whomsoever,
Wisdom is to discern real meaning of those words.

எப் பொருள் யார் யார் வாய்க் கேட்பினும், அப் பொருள்
மெய்ப்பொருள் காண்பது-அறிவு.

Don’t go by who said it. Go by what is said. Analyze those words, find out the real meaning behind them and act upon it. That is what Wisdom is. Much needed advise in Twitter.

Thirukkural – 272

What’s the use of lofty ascetic appearance – if one does
what his own heart knows is wrong.

வானுயர் தோற்ற மெவன்செய்யுந் தன்னெஞ்சந்
தானறி குற்றம் படின்.


Thirukkural – 1145

More one gets drunk, more is a drink desirable;
more our love gets gossiped, more is it blissful.

களித்தொறுங் கள்ளுண்டல் வேட்டற்றாற் காமம் 
வெளிப்படுந் தோறு மினிது.

Her friend advises her to pipe down as her love is becoming town gossip. She says “Like a drunkard relishing his drink as he gets more drunk, I relish our love more as our affair is gossiped and revealed to the public”.

This is under the chapter அலர்அறிவுறுத்தல் – Affair becomes public (Literal meaning is ‘Advising about Town gossip’)

களி – intoxicated
வேட்டல் – desirable

Thirukkural – 439

Never ever marvel at one’s own self!
Never wish to do a deed that yields no good!

வியவற்க, எஞ்ஞான்றும் தன்னை! நயவற்க,
நன்றி பயவா வினை!

Thiruvalluvar’s advice to Rulers. Never think too highly of oneself. Never even wish to do things that do not result in public good. வியத்தல் – wonder / marvel எஞ்ஞான்று – any day நயத்தல் – wish

Thirukkural – 672

Delay doing things that need to be delayed;
delay not those that are not to be delayed.

தூங்குக தூங்கிச் செயற்பால தூங்கற்க
தூங்காது செய்யும் வினை.

Nature of some jobs need them to done in gradual fashion. One shouldn’t rush to do them. Some other jobs needs to be done without delay. They should be done at the earliest.
தூங்கு – delay

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