Thursday, Apr 17, 2014
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Kunchan Nambiar: Poems


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Poems

Many of his verses are considered as proverbs of the language.

1. ചെറുപ്പ കാലങ്ങളിലുള്ള ശീലം മറക്കുമോ മനുഷ്യൻ ഉള്ള കാലം ceṟuppa kālaṅṅaḷiluḷḷa śīlaṃ maṟakkumō manuṣyan uḷḷa kālaṃ

:Translation: Will man, in his lifetime, forget habits from a young age?

:Closest English equivalent: Old habits die hard

2. ദീപസ്തംഭം മഹാശ്ചര്യം, നമുക്കും കിട്ടണം പണം dīpastaṃbhaṃ mahāścaryaṃ namukkuṃ kiṭṭaṇaṃ paṇaṃ

:Translation: The lighthouse is magnificent, we too want money.

:Closest English equivalent: When it is a question of money, everyone is of the same religion.

3. മുല്ലപ്പൂമ്പൊടി ഏറ്റു കിടക്കും കല്ലിനും ഉണ്ടാം സൗരഭ്യം mullappūmpoṭi ēṯṯu kiṭakkuṃ kallinuṃ uṇṭāṃ saurabhyaṃ

:Translation: The stone where the pollen of the jasmine falls also has its fragrance.

In one of his poems, "Kalanillatta Kalam" roughly translated as 'Time Without Any Death', Nambiar wonders how life would be if there were no death. He sees homes crowded with ever-shrinking, aged ancestors.

"Tottodiya Pada" is a poem that describes in witty detail how an army retreats from a losing battle.


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