This song is played at the electric crematoriums in Tamil Nadu. Penned by #Vairamuthu, the song has such substance and poise. A few verses give us the whole philosophy of life and helps us embrace the death of dear ones! A must listen for every one! Leaves you a bit heavy hearted, but well worth the experience. Thanks to lramchanda and Mohan Ekambaram for the suggestion.

Poet: Vairamuthu
Singer: Sudha Ragunathan
Song Sequence: (1)-(2)-(3)-(4)-(5)-(6)-(7)-(8)-(9)-(10)-(11)

(1)ஜென்மம் நிறைந்தது சென்றவர் வாழ்க
சிந்தை கலங்கிட வந்தவர் வாழ்க
நீரில் மிதந்திடும் கண்களும் காய்க 
நிம்மதி நிம்மதி இவ்விடம் சூழ்க

Jenmam niRaindhadhu sendRavar vaazhka
sindhai kalangida vandhavar vaazhka
neeril midhandhidum kaNkaLum kaaika
nimmadhi nimmadhi ivvidam soozhka

Hail the one who passed away fulfilling their purpose in this birth!
Hail the ones who came with a heavy heart to pay homage to the dead,
Let the eyes that float in tears dry!
Let peace surround this place!

(2)ஜனமும் பூமியில் புதியது இல்லை
மரணத்தைப் போலொரு பழையதும் இல்லை
இரண்டும் இல்லாவிடில் இயற்கையும் இல்லை
இயற்கையின் ஆணைதான் ஞானத்தின் எல்லை

Janamum poomiyil pudhiyadhu illai
maraNathaip poaloru pazhaiyadhum illai
iraNdum illaavidil iyaRkaiyum illai
iyaRkaiyin aaNaidhaan nYaanathin ellai

Birth ain’t a new thing on this earth,
There ain’t nothing as old as death,
If neither of these exist, nature does not exist!
The rules of the nature, is the limit of our knowledge (and hence learn to embrace it)!

(3)பாசம் உலாவிய கண்களும் எங்கே
பாய்ந்து துளாவிய கைகளும் எங்கே
தேசம் அளாவிய கால்களும் எங்கே
தீ உண்டது என்றது சாம்பலுமிங்கே

paasam ulaaviya kaNkaLum engae
paaindhu thuLaaviya kaigaLum engae
thaesam aLaaviya kaalkaLum engae
thee uNdadhu endRadhu saampalumingae

Where are the eyes that gazed with abundant affection?
Where are the arms that embraced in love?
Where are the legs that roamed the length and breadth of the country?
Finally, the ashes that remain here tell us that fire consumed the body!

(4)கண்ணில் தெரிந்தது காற்றுடன் போக
மண்ணில் பிறந்தது மண்ணுடன் சேர்க்க
எலும்பு சதை கொண்ட உருவங்கள் போக
எச்சங்களால் அந்த இன்னுயிர் வாழ்க

kaNNil therindhadhu kaatRudan poaga
maNNil piRandhadhu maNNudan saerkka
elumpu sadhai koNda uruvangaL poaga
echchangaLaal andha innuyir vaazhka

Let the one seen by the eyes, blend with the wind!
Let the one born on this soil, finally blend into the soil!
Let the form given by the bones and the flesh vanish,
Let the dear soul live as the remains (memory).

(5)பிறப்பு இல்லாமலே நாளொன்றும் இல்லை
இறப்பு இல்லாமலும் நாளொன்றும் இல்லை
நேசத்தினால் வரும் நினைவுகள் தொல்லை
மறதியைப் போலொரு மாமருந்தில்லை

piRappu illaamalae naaLondRum illai
iRappu illaamalum naaLondRum illai
naesathinaal varum ninaivugaL thollai
maRadhiyaip poaloru maamarundhillai

There is not a day that passes without birth
There is not a day that passes without death
The problems are the resident memories formed by affection!
However, there is no greater medicine than time (forgetfulness)!

(6)கடல் தொடும் ஆறுகள் கலங்குவதில்லை
தரை தொடும் தாரைகள் அழுவதும் இல்லை
நதி மழை போன்றதே விதி என்றும் கண்டும் 
மதி கொண்ட மானுடர் மயங்குவதென்ன

kadal thodum aaRugaL kalanguvadhillai
tharai thodum thaaraigaL azhuvadhum illai
nadhi mazhai poandRadhae vidhi endRum kaNdum
madhi koNda maanudar mayanguvadhenna

The rivers that merge into ocean don’t grieve,
The shooting stars which reaches the earth don’t cry, (for it is their destiny)
Having realised that human destiny is like that of the river and the rain,
why do the knowledgeable humans still repent?

(7)மரணத்தினால் சில கோபங்கள் தீரும்
மரணத்தினால் சில சாபங்கள் தீரும்
வேதம் சொல்லாததை மரணங்கள் கூறும்
விதை ஒன்று வீழ்ந்திடில் செடி வந்து சேரும்

maraNathinaal sila koabangaL theerum
maraNathinaal sila saabangaL theerum
vaedham sollaadhadhai maraNangaL kooRum
vidhai ondRu veezhndhidil sedi vandhu saerum

Death would clear some of the angers (that lingered in one’s life),
Death would remove some of the curses (that made us suffer when we lived),
Death teaches us things that even the vedas don’t preach,
For every seed that fell, a plant will be born!
(Everything we did during our life, will have a consequence )

(8)பூமிக்கு நாமொரு யாத்திரை வந்தோம்
யாத்திரை தீரும் முன் நித்திரை கொண்டோம்
நித்திரை போவது நியதி என்றாலும் 
யாத்திரை என்பது தொடர் கதையாகும்

poomikku naamoru yaathirai vandhoam
yaathirai theerum mun nithirai koNdoam
nithirai poavadhu niyadhi endRaalum
yaathirai enpadhu thodar kadhaiyaagum

We came on a pilgrimage to this earth,
before we completed our journey, we fell asleep.
Although falling asleep is predetermined,
the journey itself is a continuing story!

(10)தென்றலின் பூங்கரம் தீண்டிடும் போதும்
சூரிய கீற்றொளி தோன்றிடும் போதும்
மழலையின் தேன்மொழி செவியுறும் போதும்
மாண்டவர் எம்முடன் வாழ்ந்திடக் கூடும்

thendRalin poongaram theeNdidum poadhum
sooriya keetRoLi thoandRidum poadhum
mazhalaiyin thaenmozhi seviyuRum poadhum
maaNdavar emmudan vaazhndhidak koodum

Whenever the breeze caresses,
Whenever the sharp first rays of the sunlight shows up,
Whenever the sweet voice of a child reaches our ears,
We could live with (the memory of) the dead person (for they would remind us of them)!

(11)மாண்டவர் சுவாசங்கள் காற்றுடன் சேர்க்க
தூயவர் கண்ணொளி சூரியன் சேர்க்க
பூதங்கள் ஐந்திலும் பொன்னுடல் சேர்க்க
போனவர் புண்ணியம் எம்முடன் சேர்க்க

maaNdavar suvaasangaL kaatRudan saerkka
thooyavar kaNNoLi sooriyan saerkka
poodhangaL aindhilum ponnudal saerkka
poanavar puNNiyam emmudan saerkka

Let the breathe of the dead person blend with the air!
Let the light in the eyes of the pure soul blend into the sun!
Let the precious body blend into the five elements of nature!
Let the accrued good deeds and good karma come to us!

Comments

  1. Pingback: Life and Death | Happy Hunting Place

  2. Nandakumar

    What a mesmerizing lines from poet Sir. Vairamuthu. After hearing to his lines it prompted me to change the old axiom “Thiruvasagathirku urugar aetharkum urgar” to “Thiruvasagathirku urugar vaira vasagathirku uruguvar”. I have made a humble attempt to translate his verse in the poetic form of English verse. It is very difficult to get the literal transposition, nevertheless I’ve put in my best of efforts in not distorting the original Tamil version. Please feel free to comment on my work. Your comments are greatly appreciated. If you like it please circulate it amongst your known circle.

    Dirge for the Dead

    Hail the one who ceased to dwell
    Hail the one here who hear the knell
    Let the teary eyes dry
    Let peace prevail thereby

    Nothing is new like birth
    Nothing is as old as death
    Nature is without either of them
    Nature’s decree is brink of wisdom

    Whither goes the caring eyes
    And groping hands in skies
    Legs that paced the ground
    Burnt to ashes where to be found

    Vision that vanished with wind
    Earthy born earthly pinned
    Flesh and bone depart from home
    With the remains of the soul our memory roam

    Not a day without the birth
    Not a day without the death
    Fond memories buried deeper
    Poor memory is the greatest healer

    Rivers that touch the sea don’t languish
    Shooting stars don’t cry in anguish
    River and rain are nature’s fate
    Yet our minds fail to gestate

    With the death our anger will go
    Along with that our curse will follow
    Death spells what the scriptures failed to tell
    For a seed that fell there grows a plant as well

    We came to earth as a journey
    Ere reaching we slumber on a gurney
    Though the slumber is eventual
    The journey is perpetual

    When the flowery hands of the breeze touch us
    When the streak of sunlight is superfluous
    When we hear the prattling of the baby talk
    We are sure that the dead ones still stalk

    Let the dead ones breath mix with the air
    Let their vision blend with the sun and pair
    Let their precious body alloy with the five elements
    Let their good deeds shower upon us

    By Conjeevaram J Nandakumar

  3. kumanavannan

    I’m making an independent music video with this song, and would like to use the beautifully translated words to put as the subtitles. what are the procedures for me to do so? is it suffiecient if i credited lyricaldelights.com?

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