Eternally Yours

Any relationship has it own ups and downs. Given the current exposure of the world to us, we have coined several terms for the different phases a relationship goes through. Marriage is not the end of a relationship. In fact, it is the beginning of a whole new game play. The promise and commitment to be there for each other, with each other is divine and chaste. Words must essentially be fulfilled.

There will be days when everything is not hunky-dory. Negativities begin to play peek-a-boo every other day and people start drifting apart. It is the love that brought them together in the first place and the commitment that sealed the deal that come to help them out.

Here is a poem I had the fortune to read, which describes the feelings of a husband when he senses the minor fractures that had began to appear in his married life. This poem, written by one of the most talented souls I have had the fortune to meet and get to know, Vijay anna, cruises through the beautiful language of Thamizh and takes the help of literature to reaffirm his love to his lit-loving wife.

அன்புள்ள மனைவிக்கு,

 

‘அன்புள்ள’ என்பது

எத்துணை முழுமையற்ற ஒரு

சொற்பிரயோகம் என்பதை

உனக்குப் புரிய வைக்கும்

என் முயற்சிதான் இந்த மடல்!

To my dear wife,

This letter is an attempt to make you see how much inadequate is the expression ‘Dear’, in many situations.

நீ என் வாழ்வின்

எத்துணையோ இடங்களை நிரப்புகின்றாய் தெரியுமா…

 

கடல் முகந்து

சூள் கொண்டு

விண்ணுயர்ந்து

காற்றொடு கலந்து

அடர்ந்து

கறுத்துக்

குளிர்ந்து

நெகிழ்ந்து

மின்னி

முழங்கி

மழையாய்ப் பொழியும் முகில்கள்

குறிஞ்சியின் மலைவழி இறங்கி

முல்லையின் காடுகள் நனைத்து

மருதத்தின் சமவெளி பாய்ந்து

பாலையின் பாளங்கள் ஊறி

நெய்தலின் கடலினில் கலப்பதைக்

காவியங்களின் ஆற்றுப் படலங்களில்

கவினுறச் சொல்ல

கம்பனாதிகள் கஷ்டப்படுவதைக் 

கண்டு வா

என்

ஐம்புலன்களின் ஐந்திணைகளை

நிரப்பும் உன்

காதல் காட்டாற்றின்

புதுப்பெருக்கைச் சொல்லப் புகுந்த

என் சிரமம்

சிறிதேனும் புரியலாம் உனக்கு!

Do you know how important a part you are, in completing my life? Your role in my life is similar to the phases that a cloud undergoes in its journey from the state of water to rain. I urge you to witness people like Kamban stumbling to detail the journey of a rain drop, through the mountainous terrain of Kurinji, the dense forests of Mullai, the heavenly green expanse of agricultural lands of Marutham, the dry and arid trails of Palai and the deep water bodies of Neythal. You might get an inkling of the enormity of my task to give my love for you, a structure in words.

கல்தோன்றி மண் தோன்றாக் காலம் முதலான

கன்னித்தமிழின்

கிளவித்தலைவர்களைப் போலத்தான் 

நானும்:

காட்சியில் தொடங்கினேன்

என் காதலை,

அணங்குகொல்?  

ஆய்மயில் கொல்லோ?

அழகிய

சுடிதார் அணிந்த மாதர்கொல்?

என

நெஞ்சு மாய

ஐயுற்றுத் தெளிந்து 

ஆவல் அதிகரித்தேன்…

I am very similar to the “thalaivan” portrayed in Tamil Literature. I fell for you the moment I saw you. My eyes laid the first stone to the monument of my love for you. That moment shook me – “Is she an Angel? Or a mystical peacock that is beautiful? Or is she a lady at all, for her beauty is unseen till day. My mind raced and revolted with my head with all these unanswered questions. I have never wanted answers so badly. My curiosity was testing my patience.

அதுவரை அறிந்திராத

ஆயிரமாயிரம் உத்திகளை

அடுக்கி அசரவைத்தது

என் அறிவு என்னையே!

பேர் அறிய

ஊர் அறிய

உனக்குப்

பிடித்ததும் பிடிக்காததும் அறிய

உந்தன் கைப்பேசி எண் அறிய

காதல் பற்றிய கருத்தறிய

எல்லாவற்றிற்கும் மேலாய்

ஏற்கனவே நீ

எவனையேனும் விரும்புகிறாயா என்னும் அந்த

ஆயிரப்பொற்காசுக் கேள்விக்கு விடையறிய

அதுவரை அறிந்திராத

ஆயிரமாயிரம் உத்திகளை

அடுக்கி அசரவைத்தது

என் அறிவு என்னையே!

My intelligence surprised me then, with all the ideas and strategies that I could employ to get to know you. Your name, legacy, your likes and dislikes, your mobile number, your opinion and ideas on love and finally the million dollar question that is- If you were already in love with somebody else.

My intelligence did surprise me like never before!

நாட்டை வளைக்கும்

நாற்படைத் தலைவன் போல்

நாட்கணக்காய்த் தீட்டினேன்

நல்லபல வியூகங்களை,

I spent months in plotting a perfect plan to conquer you, like how an Emperor would, to satisfy his thirst of expansion.

அகத்திணைகள் ஆய வேண்டிப்

புறத்திணைகள் ஆராய்ந்தேன் –

 

“வெட்சி மனம்கவர்தல்

மீட்டல் கரந்தையாம்

நட்பாகிச் செல்வது வஞ்சியாம்,

பார்வைக்கு –

உட்காது எதிரூன்றல் காஞ்சி

நேரம்காத்தல் நொச்சி

அதுவளைத்தல் ஆகும் உழிஞை –

அதிரப் பொருந்தல் தும்பையாம்

காதலில்

மிக்கோர் மனம்வென்றது வாகை யாம்”

 

என

இலக்கணம் வகுத்து

இடைவிடாது இயங்கி

இதோ இன்று

இனியவளே உனைப் பெற்றேன்!

I drowned myself in ‘Purapporul’ in order to acquire the bliss of ‘Agapporul’. I used all the possible ideas from the literature that I read and devour and finally won you, my beloved!

Note- Purapporul is a branch in Tamil Literature wherein the core idea of the contents linger over the ideas of courage and bravery. It tells us tales about the manner in which Rulers conquer and the other ruler defends his territory. The variety in this, is given the names of flowers beginning with Vetchi and ending with Vaagai. On the other hand, Agapporul is that branch of literature which deals with the emotions of the heart. Love, Lust, friendship etc can be found here. 

காதலை நான் உரைத்த நொடி – எனைக்

கலங்க வைத்தாய் உன் கருத்தால்

காத்திருந்தேன் நான்

கவிதைகளால் காலம் நிரப்பி!

 

காகிதத்தில் என் கவிதைகளும்

காலத்தில் என் காத்திருப்பும்

இயற்றிய கடுந்தவத்திற்கு

இரங்கினாய் இறுதியாய்

காதல் வரம் தந்தாய்

காதலியாய் உனைத் தந்தாய்…

The moment I confessed my love to you, you shook me with your reply. You were not into it, you said. I waited, filling the void I felt, with the lines I wrote for you. Trees and time went by, finally you gave consent. It was a jubilant moment for my penance, for my patience. You gave a boon, an eternal boon to me, in the form of yourself.

உரிபொருள்கள் மாறின  

உன்னால் என் கவிதைகளில்

உள்ளுக்குள் நிறைந்தாய்

ஒவ்வொரு செல்லாய் நீ… 

கால்களில் சிறகு முளைத்தன

என்

காதலுக்கும் காலத்திற்கும்

My sorrow turned to bliss. Vows were exchanged infront of the Divine Fire. We became a single soul trapped in two bodies. You gave soul to me and my poems. You gave wings to fly, for time and for my love, to bask in the golden ray that is the sunshine.

காதலனுக்கு இருந்தததைப் போல் இன்று

கணவனுக்கு இல்லை காதல் என்று

கண்மணியே நீ குறைபட்டுக்கொள்கிறாய்

கண்ணீரால் என்மீது குற்றங்கள் சாட்டுகிறாய்!

இருக்கிறதென்று காட்டவே

இதோ இந்த மடல் உனக்கு…

Days went by in marital bliss. Today you lose heart saying the love has faded and I was a better lover than a husband. Oh my love, you tear me apart with your tears!

To refute your claim, I pen these words down.

அறியாத அந்த

அவைகளை அறிந்தபின்

ஆர்வம் சற்று குறைந்திருக்கலாம்தான்

ஆனாலும் அன்பே

இருக்கவே இருக்கிறதே

அடுத்த நிலையில்

அறியாதவை பல!

Where the mind has known the unknown, I don’t deny that my curiosity might have waxed a little. But then, darling, there is always a next step where again we are lost, in the maze of the obscure and the unknown.

அறிதோறும் அறியாமை கண்டு

செறிதோறும் சேர்த்துக் கொள்கிறேன்  

செல்லமே, என் காதலை!

I shall get that bliss similar to unraveling the mysteries of the unknown, every time I derive pleasure from you, my Love!

காகிதத்தில் இல்லையென்றாலும்

காலச்சுவடுகளில்

இயற்றிக்கொண்டுதானே இருக்கிறேன்

கவிதைகளை நான்?

கவனிக்கவில்லையா நீ?

If not in words, in trails of time, I still am penning down poems for you. Did you not notice that?

கண்கள் சிவக்கும் உன்னைக்

கன்னம் சிவக்க வைப்பேனே!

கவிதையில்லையா அது?

 

கேட்காத கேள்விகளுக்குக்

காதுக்குள் கிசுகிசுக்கும் விடைகள்,

கவிதையில்லையா அது?

I shall make you go pink in your cheeks, when your eyes are red from all the tears that you shed. Is it not a poem? Those sweet nothings that we whisper in each others ears, even when there was not a word spoken before that, isn’t that a poem?

தோற்பதற்கென்றே தொடங்கப்படும்

தொல்லையில்லாத சண்டைகள்,

கவிதையில்லையா அது?

 

எதிர்பாரா நேரத்தில்

எதிர்கொள்வாயே அது,

கவிதையில்லையா அது?

Those little tiffs that we begin, just to lose ourselves and make each other win, Isn’t that a poem? When you feel the unexplainables at the unexpected times, Is that not a poem?

வார்த்தைக்குத் தப்பிக்கும்

வாழ்வின் அந்நொடிகள்,

கவிதையில்லையா அது?

 

இன்னும் இன்னும் இருக்கின்றன

எழுத இயலாதவையும்

எழுதக் கூடாதவையும் – எனக்கு

எழுதத் தெரியாதவையும்…

Moments of life, which take life in pieces of paper, only to be re-lived later on, isn’t that a poem by itself?

There is much more, which cannot be written, shall not be written and those which I know not how to be written.

என்

ஆயிரம் கவிதைகளையும்

ஒரே ஒரு நொடியின்

ஒரு துளி மௌனத்தில்

ஒன்றுமில்லாமல் ஆக்கிவிடும்

உன்னிடம் எதைச் சொல்ல?

இந்த ஒன்றை தவிர,

 

நான் உன்னைக் காதலிக்கின்றேன்!

என்றும் என்றென்றும்…

What do I have to say? To you, who would burn all my words written so far, with a single glance, with your momentary silence, into smithereens.

I have nothing more to say than this- I love you, always.

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An Instance of the Indian Hypocrisy

Indian media mindset has a weird way of bringing things to the notice of the large populace. You might say that it is the sole purpose of the media, but then there is way. For example, not too long ago we had a similar situation when one snapchat of a particular comedian went viral AFTER it had been blown out of proportion by our news channels. It is long overdue for the next one I say. I present to you, the great outrage of last night-  A Bill Board of Jack and Jones.

jack-and-jones

Disclaimer- J & J have taken down this ad and apologized about this. This image has been taken only for representation.

It was a sight to behold last night in one of the popular channels. Apparently Ranveer Singh has come out with an apology for doing the ad. What made me wonder was that why wasn’t anyone bothered about asking for an apology from the woman in the ad? Wasn’t she also a part of the pic? Doesn’t she also have a role in  safeguarding the dignity of women (Which was claimed to be tainted by this particular sexist ad) and so on and so forth.

Now personally I do not subscribe to the idea of fixing the responsibility of a deed to just one party when there are more parties to it, clearly. The people in the panel had the nerve to demand the ad agency, the brand and Ranveer to tender an apology but nobody spoke about the lady in the picture. Now isn’t that sexism?

In country of 1.2 billion and counting population it is highly impossible to do a work of art satisfying all of them. invariably somebody or the other gets offended and people lose their sanity over it. It is rather difficult to draw boundaries to art and creativity, which might actually end up restricting it and serving no purpose at the end.

Indian hypocrisy is quite famous and notorious for these. We conveniently forget that we always have the option to not see the things that would offend us or cause us injury. We just choose to not use that option and end up outraging for all the wrong reasons. Where are we going as a country?

Responsibility is something to be shared. Every one of us have equal share in treating and portraying people in the right manner. We must realise that there is no need to outrage on unnecessary and insignificant things. It isn’t going to serve any purpose, whatsoever.

Hypocrisy must end, once and for all or else India will be named as the Hypocrite Capital of the World.

Padayappa and The Women

“En vazhi, thani vazhi”

How much have we clapped and swooned for this line? Uttered in repetition by our own Thalaiva, Padayappa is a movie that we would watch time and again, to just enjoy. My earliest memory of this movie is going to the theatre with Appa and Amma and watching the movie unfold in the big screen, in all its glory. I was all of 6 or 7 years of age then. This was infact the first and last movie that I watched with family in theatre.

Padayappa is a typical Rajinikanth+ K.S Ravikumar movie. A “Good wins over the Evil” type of storyline with a nothing less than God Hero, a coy and shy heroine, the usual masala sentiments and motions running high amidst family feud over wealth. Now what this post isn’t is a movie review or a technical analysis. No. That is not my thing to do. This post is something else.

After watching the movie a couple of times after I grew up, I understood that more than the style of Thalaivar and the usual jingoisms and cliches of the Director, the thing that makes me want to go back is the quality of the female characters in the story. Who could forget the oomph of our own Neelambari or the typical ideal coy bride that was Vasundhara?

Let me try and give what those characters in the story meant to me.

Anitha- Padayappa’s daughter

This woman is born out of a wedlock that was filled with nothing but love and moral values. She is sent out of town for her studies and comes back, educationally qualified and in love with a young las, who typically hails from a forbidden family ( Movies guys!!). Now she hides the affair from her parents obeying somebody else who claims to be her well-wisher and causes insult to her father in front of a whole lot of people. Now, after all the ususal drama that goes on for this, when Padayappa asks her about the affair, she stands her ground and affirms that she loves the guy and she is not going to be betrayed into falsities in the name of love.

This, I think, was such a moment when the confidence of Anitha comes out. She stands for her love and is confident about her decision. Power to her!

Padayappa’s Sister- Played by Sithara

sitara

She is cheated by her fiance who runs of to marry another girl, from her own extended family, because of wealth and fame. She stews in her misery and is speechless as to her future. Gradually in the gap of one song, she finds her ground and comes back stronger to become a teacher and also marry another man, who is a better human being. She loves her groom to bits and is unapologetic in having done so. She has not one bit of regret and she doesn’t get wasted in the name of love, like many other contemporary women who have been portrayed to do. Setting aside the stupidity of the song, I admired the way she gathered herself up. That is what we call guts and courage.

Padayappa’s mother- Played by Lakshmi

lakshmi

Losing her husband might have shook her world , but she was not the one to be pushed over. She stood by her children till the end and made sure that they remain happy. She had many, many opportunities to succumb to the pressure of being a single parent and dance to the tune of others around, but she chose to live by the legacy of her family that she has raised and by the principles that she had set for herself.  Women who put their devastating past behind and look forward are the ones who end up ruling the world and the hearts of many out there!

Neelambari

mins

Ah! Where do I even begin? A woman who is born into a rich family, pampered to bits by the family, comes back into town and falls for the most eligible bachelor there. The bachelor, like anybody who watched Rajinikanth movies would expect, shuns her saying all the possible misogynistic reasons ( Remember? “Nan oru pombalaya kalyanam panniknum nu aasa padren” and the various criteria that he doles out for a woman ranging from “nidhaanam” to “not being a bajaari”). She tries to get to the guy by hook or crook only to be outwitted by him at every juncture. All is fair in Love and War, you see? The guy goes on to marry his “ideal” woman and lives happily ever after. She ends up becoming the most loser version of a psycho and locks herself up in a room. Story ends. Or does it?

neel

Nope. This is where it actually begins.

She comes out after a self imposed exile of 18 years, in a more ravishing appearance and style. (She steals the thunder totally after this and Whattey friggin screen presence man!) She schemes and plots the downfall of the guy whom she had the hots for and still ends up being outwitted. She refuses to succumb. She shoots herself in the end, thus dying a death that boosts up her ego bigtime and gives her the eternal satisfaction of having won over the guy.

What I observed meanwhile was that she ended up alone. She didn’t marry anybody else because she wanted him and only him. In an era of “Beep songs” and “Pombalainga kaadhala thaan nambi vidadhey” this was refreshing for me. She totally ruled the space and I am sure that nobody else could have done this any better! Total surender to the woman who lived as Neelambari.

The equality of women was also mentioned here and there in the movie. Those mild gestures interspersed with the storyline are such a treat to watch and I have no regrets at all in being a complete fan of this movie. Gives me a fresh perspective, every single time.

I Quit!

i-quit

“I Quit”

Not many of us would have had the experience of telling these precise words. Quitting and quitters have always been looked down upon with contempt and condescension. The society has always considered quitting as a taboo.

“Giving up” is important. Giving up at the right time, for the right cause is even more important. Relationships, career, causes etc have time and agian made us think and re-think our strategy about living and dying.

Quitting isn’t that bad, you know? Let me give you an example.

Say you are stuck at a point in your life when nothing makes sense to you. Your efforts and dedication go to drains, and that frustrates you to the core. In short, you are reduced to a walking talking corpse of sorts. Now, remember that the thing that you are working for have all the possibilities of ending up either ways. That is, it has equal probability of succeeding and also of flunking.

This is a trying situation where you are sure that you cannot pitch in with more because the extra effort is going to be very less when compared with the time it takes and the resources it consumes. What would you do? I would say, sit back and look at the broader picture. Do not go by the metrics. Listen to your heart, for once in your lifetime. (Thank me later, of course)

Quit, when the time is right and ripe. The world would still go on even if you choose to be something else, you know? Life will definitely go on. So just take a moment out of your self obsessed nature and give your thoughts some rest.

Relationships and activism are equally taxing and if you are stuck at the wrong places, life is going to be hell. The world has overrated people who keep trying. I do not, for once, say that they are losers or that it is foolish to try. When things are taking too long and when the efforts are just not giving you the results that you had hoped for, please read the signs and take an informed decision. It is never too late to quit and start afresh.

Letting go of things is hard. It is an art that comes with practise. At some point during our existence, we need to realise that we cannot have everything that we wish for. We would end up losing – men, material and money. It is during such times that we learn. We learn to prioritise and choose what we want and what we need. That is how we grow up.

We have an obligation to keep ourselves safe- physically and emotionally. Cater to that requirement of life. If something stops giving you satisfaction, you know what to do.

Quit, when you feel this is leading you nowhere. The moment you begin to feel saturated, quit! Do not turn back. Start running away from things that bring you down. Trust me, you will go places.