Biography of Ponniah Ganeshan
The things that I would like to share
I have never planned my life and similarly I have never been
Defeated in my life either
Yet, when I let things go on the ways of their own,
And start appreciating them,
I feel that likes become dislikes
Dislikes become like at times
That they become traces of life
Always, Always and Always.
Talking things and thinking to talk things
And things we are told,
Behold things and thinking to behold at things,
Similarly the things we hear and things we are heard
Always refine life as I feel.
I am one who likes to behold things at life
As a beautiful dream.
Because, I myself become a dream one day.
WHO AM I.
During my school career probably in 1967, I was much interested appreciating poems in Tamil, my mother tongue and wanted to write similar poems. I started writing poems in traditional ways that is to say with rhymes. I well remember when I was 16 years old, I wrote a poem and sent it to a Tamil magazine where it was published in the children corner. I can not tell how much I had been delighted. The poem was about the SKY which was like this as far I remember its words if I put it in English.
The sky is so high and blue in colour
Where beautiful stars and clouds live together
With happy and gay
The sky is endless and keeps us wondering
On days with sun and at night with moon shining
The sky is everywhere above our heads
The sky is the source of everything for our lives
It goes and goes beyond with no end.
I had written more poems of this nature during my school career but I did not have a single one in my possession. Most of them were published in Tamil Newspapers and Magazines. Then I started writing love poems during my teenage when I was reading GCE (A.L) . I had written a number of such poems But I can not remember all such poems. Indeed, I had a collection of my poems with reference to Newspapers and Magazines published. Unfortunately, I had lost it due to a cyclone that hit my area in the year 1977. In course of time, I had published a quarterly Magazine “ KEETRU” in Tamil meaning flash of light. One Logendralingam Kalaikolunthan and myself were the Co editors to this magazine. The articles and poems contained in this magazine were unlike those published in mass media but they were of serious and intellectual thinking and thought provoking. We could be able to publish 7 Issues and copies of some of such Issues are still me.
During the year 1997, I have published a collection of my poems titled “ A Space in a Space within “ which contained some poems written by me in English. This book was reviewed by Mr. K.Kunarajah who says,
“ Kallooran (the Pen Name of Ponniah Ganeshan) also known as Pon Ganesh, has brought forth a book of poems under title “ Velikkul Veli” which means a space in a space within. It has been published by “View-Gum, a quarterly magazine only known among serious Tamil literary limited circles.
The collection of poems contains 29 Tamil and 5 English poems. The poet declares about ‘ the point from where his poems begin’ that his goal is journeying beyond time and space losing all his identities. And he says, he is only journeying with a soul of his own. The poet has had close contact with the JVP comrades during the year 1978 and he was greatly disappointed and dissatisfied with their activities. He symbolizes Karl Marx, Lenin and Castro only to convey that he was much interested in communist philosophy and that he lost faith in it due to chauvinistic attitude of the so-called comrades. So he states in the Free-verse like prose which speaks of the Point from where his poems begin.
Kallooran says in one of his English poems,
“ I am given an animal’s name
In a land of people
For I am taught to see
Only my fame
In Newspapers, over radio
Even in toilets
I look for my name in vain”
In a Tamil poem, he says,
“ A death is only with a few leaves of life
And a life with some dead thorns of death
Scare-crown are made alive:
With my death and life
With his life and death “
Kallooran in his anguished exploration of his humanness, tries to show,
“ Journeying beyond time and space,
Depriving of all my identities crowned,
I am out in a space within
All beyond the blade of a grass
All beyond the blade of a flower:
On the whole, the poems of Kallooran, are so impressive to the extent that they cannot simply be set aside. “
WHERE DO MY POEMS BEGIN FROM:
I was told that God existed and I believed. For the sake of His pleasure, I gave up eating fish and meat. I used to apply Holy Ashes on my forehead and display flowers in my ears. The God was in the detention of my parochial room with the smell of incense sticks and of camphor.
“Release Him “
“Release Him “
Karl Marx and Lenin with their comrades gathered my compound and obstructed my way. All my Angels were chased out of my dreams. I was caught in-between without a land to rest and without a sky to fly out.
“Who am I? ”
“Who am I? ”
“Wherein lain my existence? ”
The down-trodden seen and no man was found being sinned. I accepted it. All my gods had become mere idols without a tongue to talk. Enjoyed breaking of what I thought was ideal. I was in the company of comrades. I was in the company of Vietnam fighters. Castro was with a garland and his magnificent cap on head. Che-Quera shook hands with me. I rejoiced.
Then saddened my heart, all of a sudden
The flames of fire everywhere encountered.
Houses were burnt down
Paddy fields and trees burnt to ashes.
Human were burnt alive.
The dead body of a young boy who was killed, was brought and laid
Among corpses with lacerated chest by bullets.
He was one of my brothers.
“ Catch him up “
“ Catch him up “
There were my comrades who shouted towards me. I took to my heels. They tried to fix me up assembling with my identity.
One by one
Opening the box where they kept hidden
I took to my heels.
Heard a voice – the murderer was resembled with my identities.
Another death thrustered upon me.
All burial grounds began to open
Their greedy mouths one by one..
I fell down, lying in a street.
There was a man who took me in his arm
And made to quench my thirst.
The man bears a name similar to mine.
My eyes were brimful of tears.
Where are my comrades with the dress
Of magnificent red color?
“Who am I? ”
“Who am I? ”
Guns sprouted every where
And heard blasting of everything, everywhere.
The sky is measured
And stars are counted and accounted.
Leaders are made pictures
Hanging on walls with garlands.
I am again at the place from where I started.
Yet my journey is with different sun and stars shining above.
I rub and rub and write myself again and again.
My poems, the manifestation of what I observe with my empty
Mind and heart,
Are smiling flowers that bloomed
In a corner
Only to visible for those who are
In anguished exploration of humanness.
I feel that I become nothing with everything.
Ponniah Ganeshan's Works:
My collection of poems published is 'A Space in a Space within '.
- Between Me And Myself -new-
Ponniah Ganeshan Poems
Vanishing In Thin Air.
I have come to a stage When times hardly moves I have come to a stage When nobody cares for me
Positive Vs Negative
No one can deny There is something beyond our knowledge Something we can not see but onlyfeel Something we can not study but only believe
A Thought For Tamil And Sinhala New Year
Tamil and Sinhala New Year Comes again and knocks at our doors, Passing a message made of no words Of your language nor of mine
I Was A Blank Sheet
I was a blank sheet With no any writing on it When I was born; I was a flower blooming
A Beautiful Thought Of Life
I lit my heartwith a lamp to dispel dark and become lighten Of my hardships, everyday To allow beautiful thoughts, chasing
Hating And Greeting
You may hate me or greet me Yet, hating and greeting have now Become one and same to me, my friend! I might be hated by you for something
Some Questions And Answers
What is followed by birth I asked the God You'd better be born and see Said, He
Unholy Men In Holy Order
I have made a God of my own And you, yours. He has made a god of his own And they, theirs.
My Dear Fellow Man…..
In what container Do you want to weigh me After mutilating hands and legs Clipping of fingers
Teach Me To Care And Not To Care
Teach me to care and not to care Corpses adrift and were cast out ashore With heads severed.
There was a moth Hovering around the lamp At night Flying I warned her not to be killed by herself
Still I Love You
I am as dead my neighbor Come, see My house and garden And temple all in ashes
Life And Death
Today becomes yesterday and so tomorrow. Yet, we all rejoice in paltry things of the moment jumping up and down
House, Heart And The World At Large
I keep my house and compound clean Removing wastes and unwanted things And planting trees and plants that blooms with flowers
A Birth Day Wish
A BIRTH DAY WISH
What picture shall I draw
On the 44th page
Of your life today?
A sea gull
Flying beyond the horizon
And a lonely boat down the sea