Saturday, 28 May 2011

Thirukkural in English - From chapters 109 to 120

Division III. Love - From chapters 109 to 120

109 Fascination

1081 "A goddess, a rare peahen or a woman
Decked with jewels?" My heart is amazed!

1082 She returns my look with looks that strike
Like darts of an armed angel.

1083 I never knew yama before, but now I realize
That it is feminine and has warring eyes.

1084 She may have that feminine grace
But her look sucks life out of men who gaze.

1085 Is it death's dart, or eye's beams, or fawn's glance?
Her look has all these three.

1086 It’s only when her callous eyebrows bend and veil her eyes
That my heart’s flutters cease.

1087 Like the veil over the face of a rutting elephant
Is the vest that veils her buxom breasts.

1088 Ah, there goes all my might which foes dread in fight,
When I face her brows beaming bright!

1089 What use are jewels to a damsel
Adorned with modesty and meek looks of a hind?

1090 Wine delights only when imbibed,
But never at mere look like love!

110 Reading hints

1091 Her painted eyes have a double effect:
One glance brings pain and the other cures.

1092 A single sneaky glance of her eyes
Is more than half the pleasure of love.

1093 She looked, and dropped her head,
And so watered the plant of love.

1094 When I look, she looks to the ground.
When I don't, she looks and gently smiles!

1095 Without looking straight,
She passes a slanting glance and smiles.

1096 They may speak like strangers, but the words
Will soon reveal their intimacy.

1097 Words that look unfriendly and looks that look offending
Are signs of love in disguise.

1098 Her gentle smile to my pleading look
Adds beauty to her gentle nature.

1099 To look at each other as if they were strangers
Belongs to lovers alone.

1100 When eyes with eyes commingle,
What do words avail?

111 Bliss of union

1101 In her alone, my jewel, can I find the five senses of
Sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch.

1102 The cure for a disease is always different.
But this jewel is both disease and cure.

1103 Is heaven sweeter than slumbering
On the soft shoulders of the women you love?

1104 Whence did she get the fire
Which burns when far, and cools when near?

1105 Her flower-decked shoulders
Give me whatever I need, then and there.

1106 Her shoulders must verily be nectar
For they refresh my life whenever I touch.

1107 Like sharing one’s food at one’s own home
Is the embrace of this fair maid.

1108 Sweet indeed is that embrace
Wherein not a breath comes between.

1109 To fall out, make up, and unite again are the gains
Reaped by those obsessed with love.

1110 The more you indulge, the more you realize your ignorance.
Be it love or learning.

112 Expressing her charms

1111 Hail thee, aniccham, the soft flower!
The damsel I dote is softer than thee!

1112 O heart, why get distracted seeing common flowers
And match them with her eyes!

1113 She has a slender frame, pearly smile, fragrant breath,
Lancet eyes and bamboo shoulders.

1114 Unable to match the eyes of this jewel,
Lilies droop down earthwards in shame.

1115 The solemn drums will blare if her waist is crushed
By the aniccham she wore with its stalk.

1116 The perplexed stars are all over the place,
Unable to tell the moon from her face.

1117 Are there spots on my love’s face
Like the spots on the shining moon?

1118 Hail O moon! If you could also shine as my love’s face,
You too I shall love.

1119 O moon, if you imitate my flower-eyed jewel’s face,
Stop revealing thyself to all.

1120 Even aniccham flower and swan's down
Are as nerunji fruit to my maidens’ feet.

113 Excellence of love


1121 Like a mixture of milk and honey,
Is the drool that drips through her pearly teeth.

1122 The bond between me and this damsel
Is like the union of body and soul.

1123 O pupil of my eye! Be gone,
For there is no place for the maiden I love.

1124 Life is lively when she is around,
But dreadful when she leaves.

1125 Recollection is needed if only I forget.
How can I forget her dazzling warring eyes!


1126 So subtle is my lover’s form that he neither leaves my eyes
Nor is he hurt when I wink.

1127 I will not paint my eyes and so lose
Even for a trice the sight of my love.

1128 I dare not swallow anything hot
Lest it hurt my lover within me!

1129 My eyes don’t close for fear of losing him.
Seeing this, folks blame him for desertion.

1130 He dwells gladly forever in my heart.
And the folks say he is loveless and has left me.

114 Abandonment of reserve

1131 Those that enjoyed love and now mourn in affliction
Have nothing but the madal for strength.

1132 Away with shame! Soul and body can bear no more,
And will mount the madal.

1133 Modesty and manliness once I owned,
But now only the madal ridden by the lustful.

1134 Alas, the raft of modesty and manliness is swept away
By the rushing tide of lust!

1135 The maiden with her armlets of garland
Gave me the madal and the pangs of eventide.

1136 Even at midnight I think of riding the madal,
Unable to close my eyes because of her.

1137 Nothing grandeur than women! Their love may rage like sea,
Yet don’t mount the madal!

1138 Pitiless love with no regard for modesty,
Betrays itself to reveal the secrets public.

1139 Perplexed is my passion that it roves in public
With complaints of being unnoticed.

1140 Fools laugh so as to be seen by us,
Not having endured what we have.

115 Spreading romours

1141 Rumours revive hope; Those that spread them
Luckily don't know this.

1142 Rumours have gifted me this flowery-eyed belle;
The public know not her preciousness.

1143 Should I not welcome their rumours
Which give that feel of owning whom I own not?

1144 Rumours enhance my love which might have
Otherwise waned losing its power.

1145 Wine delights with every sip.
So does love with every disclosure.

1146 Our meeting was but for a day, but the outcry is
As if a serpent has swallowed the moon.

1147 The village gossip manures my love,
And my mother's reproaches water it.

1148 To suppress love with scandal
Is to put fire out with ghee!

1149 He who said “fear not” has flared up rumour.
Why then should I blush for this outcry?

1150 This village gossip is what we desire,
For it serves the desire of my lover.

116 Sufferings of separation

1151 Tell me if you are not leaving. Bid farewell to those
Who can survive to see your return.

1152 His mere look was once a delight; but now
Even his embrace saddens, fearing separation.

1153 How hard it is to trust when even he who knows
Breaks his word and goes!

1154 How can I be blamed for trusting one
Who left me after assuring “fear not”?

1155 If you would serve me, stop him going.
Gone we shall not meet again.

1156 When he is stubborn to announce separation,
It is futile to hope for reunion.

1157 Do not the bangles sliding down my arms
Forebode the departure of my lord?

1158 It is bitter to live among strangers.
Bitter still is to part with one's love.

1159 Can fire, which hurts when touched,
Hurt like the passion of love even untouched?

1160 Strange how many can bear separation,
Survive sorrow, and live!

117 Love sickness

1161 I would hide this sickness, but it wells up
Like water drawn from a spring.

1162 Hide this sickness, I cannot.
To tell him who caused it, I am ashamed.

1163 Love and shame hang poised on my life.
My body unable to bear them.

1164 There is indeed a flood of lust;
But no safe raft to swim across it.

1165 If his friendship can bring so much misery,
How will it be in enmity?

1166 The pleasure of love is as vast as the sea.
Vaster still is the sorrow of its hurt.

1167 Whirling in the stormy sea of love, I find no shore;
Even at midnight I am alone.

1168 Poor night, putting all things to sleep,
Has only me for company.

1169 Even crueler than my cruel lord
Are the long nights of these days.

1170 If eyes could also reach him like the heart,
They won’t be swimming in a flood of tears.

118 Languishing eyes

1171 Why the same eyes that showed him to me
And caused this fever, now cry in anguish?

1172 Why do these eyes, once thoughtlessly looked at him,
Now not repent but grieve?

1173 Funny the very same eyes that once
Eagerly looked at him are now in tears!

1174 Having driven me to this incurable fever,
My eyes have dried up, drained of all tears.

1175 My eyes plunged me in a raging sea of love
And for this must suffer sleepless pain.

1176 How nice! The eyes that caused this torment
Are themselves tormented.

1177 Let tears dry up pining and pining in the eyes
That eyed him longing and longing.

1178 He made love with words, not with heart.
Yet my eyes pine, seeing him not.

1179 Sleepless when he is not here, sleepless when he is,
Either way my eyes never rest.

1180 With eyes that drum up and declare my grief,
It is hard to conceal secrets from these folks!

119 The hues of pallor

1181 Having agreed to part my love,
How can I complain of my pallor to others?

1182 Claiming that it begot through him,
Pallor creeps over my body with pride.

1183 He robbed me first of my beauty and shame,
And gave in exchange sickness and pallor.

1184 His words I recollect and prowess I chant.
Yet, how does pallor sneak in?

1185 There goes my lover and here comes the pallor
To creep over my body.

1186 Darkness lies in wait for the lamp to go out,
And pallor for the embrace to break.

1187 Locked in embrace, I turned a little.
Seizing that moment, pallor seized me in full.

1188 "Pallid has she become” blame everyone,
But none say “He parted her”.

1189 If my lord who left me remains free of guilt,
My pallor is worth all the grief.

1190 I don’t mind being called pallid, so long as
They don’t blame him for causing it.

120 Torture of loneliness

1191 Only those blessed with the love of being loved
Are blessed with the seedless fruit of love.

1192 Like the heavenly showers to living men
Is the blessing of grace by lovers to their beloved.

1193 They alone can have the pride of living together
Who are loved by their beloved.

1194 Even if loved by others, they are luckless
Unless loved by those they love.

1195 What more can I expect of my lord
If he does not love me as much as I love him?

1196 One-sided love pains like lopsided kavadi.
It is sweet only when shared by both sides.

1197 Can't the god of Love, lodged in me alone
Causing distress, see my pallor and pain?

1198 Hard is the heart that can survive this world
Without a word of love from the beloved.

1199 Though my beloved bestows nothing,
Still any news about him is sweet to my ears.

1200 O heart, why pour your concerns to the unconcerned?
As well dump into the sea!

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