Edasseri Govindan Nair

(23 December 1906 - 16 October 1974 / Kuttippuram, Kerala, India)

Flower In Worship - Poem by Edasseri Govindan Nair

No place for weeping in the flow of Time,
It is not for weeping over, you gave us riches.

Light, Water, Air, Heaven and Hade,
Countless solar systems-all thy playthings
The enchanting life that throbs around
Rich and green - (even that thy gift!)
Thy gifts in a variety of forms - unseen gods,
Blades of grass, worms, butterflies, men,
With gratitude I think of these - yet
Had you to give us this cursed Love?

But now, a tender life did adorn my lap,
My heart was filled with comfort and hope.
A light for my eyes, a wise of cool breeze
To caress my being, to fill my veins with joy!

You bade me lift him from the dell below
And raise him to the vast expanse above.
Well, had you to bind us with this chain
Of affection just to cause us pain?

To see him was to be in the morning state,
An embrace was like sandal paste.
The world was a grand festive field for me,
What a realm of bliss where I chanced to be!

Alas, mango blossom! I did not see
The dark clouds of what was sure to be.
A lovely wick aflame did I place
To face a storm that was gaining pace.
A fool, I built my heaven on sands,
A hopeless hell I made with my own hands.

To weep now; but a question comes up oft,
Who will an answer give?
What was my fault?

Poverty used to wet my eyes,
My hands would rise to wipe the tears.
Humiliations subdue me, but then,
I stroke my beard and raise my face.
Obstacles untold block my way.
When hurts and wounds my body cover
I cling to the cool comfort you did shower.
Never washed I with eye's salty tears
My body soiled with sweat
Is that the crime?

Like crescent at dawn, cold and still,
Lay there my life, I see him still.
The day broke in.
Though pale, as the night had sucked all blood,
A tender smile lit up his lips.
Darling, is it to give me a little relief
That you lit up a sparkler
With your life that was drying up?

When dusk grew dark, Cruelty?
You snatched from me
The tender sprout of life yourself had given.
Like a creeper struck with lightning
Lay the mother at my feet swooning.
I stood and watched with heart turned steel,
Justice felt its eyes too, dull.

You filled with fire those lovely eyes
Golden dawns were wont gently to praise.
You forced fierce storms across that breast,
Liquid fire along those veins.

O Cruelty!
You,
You alone are the Eternal Truth!
With gratitude I throw at you this name:
'Hey, The Merciful', this address like a
Flower offered in worship
May thy feet accept, that'll be a favor.

[Translated from Malayalam 'Poojapushpam' by well-known poet Madhavan Ayyapath. ]


Poet's Notes about The Poem

This poem was written over the loss of a child. The subdued tone of the lament is noticeable. In the final stanza he is addressing Cruelty as 'The Merciful'. In a number of poems Edasseri addresses cruelty as the reigning God. According to him Cruelty is the eternal truth and whatever little happiness that is bestowed kindly on us occasionally by Him is only to sharpen the pangs inflicted by his claws.

In his poem 'Mullan Cheera' (The Thorny Spinach) he sings 'Oh Cruelty, victory for you over and over again, since in cultural wealth you are my heritage. This poem appears in the collection named 'Laghu Ganangal'.

Given on the right is a translation of the poem 'Poojapushpam' by Mr. Madhavan Ayyapath, a well-known poet. This poem has been rendered by Dr. S.P. Ramesh, and presented in an audio cassette. See below. Two other poems featuring on this cassette are 'Karutha Chettichikal' (rendered by Dr. S.P. Ramesh) and 'Unnikrishnanodu' (by Mr. M. Krishnakumar) .

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, September 6, 2012

Poem Edited: Thursday, September 6, 2012


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