Old Tamil Poetry

Translations of Tamil Poetic works that span 2000 years

Kurunthokai – 102

If I think of him, my heart aches;
to not think of him, is beyond me;
my love pains me and grows sky high;
the man I love, is not a honorable guy.

உள்ளின், உள்ளம் வேமே; உள்ளாது
இருப்பின், எம் அளவைத்து அன்றே; வருத்தி
வான் தோய்வற்றே, காமம்;
சான்றோர் அல்லர், யாம் மரீஇயோரே.

Poem written by Avvayar. Her lover hasn’t come to see her in a long time. She is lovelorn. Her friend asks her not to fret. This is her answer to her friend. “I can’t think of him, I can’t not think of him. My love sickness grows by the day. But he hasn’t come as he promised. He isn’t some one who keeps his words.”

In the first sentence வேமே – வேகுமே – is normally translated as ‘burns’. I have used ‘ache’ as it fits better than burns here. வே also means distress according to Chennai University dictionary.

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