Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Andal Cuckoo Messenger

I haven't slept for many days - My Bones are melting, the Smile is gone, the red lips have become darker - Only you know the Pangs of Separation 

In the previous decad, Andal looked out for positive omens to see if the indications are right for her to unite with her beloved. Now in this fifth decad of Nachiyar Thirumozhi, she calls on the cuckoo to take her love messages to her Lord. 

Andal dedicates an entire decad in the Nachiyar Thirumozhi to showcase the role of cuckoo as a messenger.Through these verses, she has a personal communication with the cuckoos directing them to pass on her love message to her beloved.

For long she says she has been longing to unite with him but he has evaded her. She has been bubbling with excitement and her entire body had risen with energy but in recent times her soul has been tormented with fading hopes. She asks the cuckoo to not go into hiding too just like her Lord and directs the cuckoo to call her lord who she identifies as one with conch and chakra and mace. In return for this effort, she says that the cuckoo will earn her lifelong gratitude and promises to place her head at the cuckoo’s feet.

She narrates to the cuckoo as to how she lost her bangles in her love life with her lord. And she finds this unfair. She is focussing solely on the Lord but the cuckoo stands in front of her pulling her remaining bangles.

Praising the Cuckoos as ones residing in Punnai, Kurukatti, Nalal and Serundi Groves, Andal wants her beloved Lord to be informed of her love plight. She compares her current state of mind to the Koel’s mind and states that it is the Koel who will be able to understand the pangs of separation from the beloved. 

புன்னை குருக்கத்தி ஞாழல் செருந்திப்
பொதும்பினில் வாழங்குயிலே

She  provides clues to the Cuckoo to locate her Lord. Shes says that her Lord can be identified as one with beautiful coral lips in Sapphire hue, with a Garuda banner and with a white Conch (Andal describes in detail the greatness of the Conch later in the Nachiyar Thirumozhi).

She goes on to describe further her current state of mind in the next verse. She is losing patience and has now become a bit angry as well as her beloved is simply enjoying her dying dance and not responding to her cries.  She is saddened that he does not appear before her.

உள்ளம் புகுந்து என்னை நைவித்து நாளும்
உயிர்பெய்து கூத்தாடும் காணும்

She turns her attention to the cuckoo and wants the cuckoo to sing songs inviting her Lord to come soon. She asks the Cuckook not to continue to sip the honey from the Shenbagam flowers. She asks the cuckoo not to evade her with sweet little talk and directs her to go immediately to the Lord of Venkatam.  However just when the cuckoo was seemingly ready to leave, she found the buzzing bees sucking honey from the flowers and lost herself in that sight.

கள்ளவிழ் செண்பகப்பூ கோதிக் களித்திசை பாடும் குயிலே

What Love does to one!!!
Describing Srivilliputhur as a place with huge swarm of swans that graceful flap in pairs, Andal recounts her story of the past few days. She cannot find her Lord coming from any direction. Her bones are melting in anxiety. She is in total sorrow.  She has not slept for many days. She showcases her misery as being as large as the ocean and says that she herself is like a small life boat in that large sea.
என் புருகி இனவேல் நெடுங்கண்கள்
இமை பொருந்தா பல நாளும்

துன்பக் கடல்புக்கு வைகுந்தனென்பது ஓர்
தோணி பெறாது உழல்கின்றேன்

She describes her fading personality inflicted by the endless wait for her lover. She has lost her smile, her red lips have become darker, her soul is agitating in grief and her breasts have become less beautiful and are rising yearning for his loving touch. 

She questions the Cuckoo as to what she gains by thus hiding and not reaching out to her Lord and passing on her Love message to him. And says that it will indeed be a virtuous deed carried out by the Cuckoo if she helps this Lover unite with her beloved.

கொங்கை கிளர்ந்து குமைத்து குதூகலித்து
ஆவியை ஆகுலம் செய்யும்

அங்குயிலே உனக்கென்ன மறைந்துறைவு
ஆழியும் சங்கும் ஒன்தண்டும்

தங்கிய கையவனை வரக்கூவில் நீ
சாலத் தருமம் பெறுதி

Bribes the Cuckoo
Having requested and pleaded for a while, Andal lures the Cuckoo with an incentive. Reminding the cuckoo of her lack of sleep, she says that she has been yearning to see the golden feet of the Lord. She bribes the koel that if she does this helping act, she will be friend her like her parrot and will give her milk and sweet morsel.

மென்னடை யன்னம் பரந்து விளையாடும்.....
பொன்னடி காண்பதோ ராசையினால் என் பொறு கயற் கண்ணினை துஞ்சா

இன்னடிசிலோடு பாலமுதூட்டி 
எடுத்த என் கோலக் கிளியை
உன்னொடு தோழமை கொழுவன் குயிலே
உலகளந்தான் வரக் கூவாய்

Praising the cuckoo as one that rests in a corner of the bunch of flowers, she promises to bow in respect if the cuckoo helps her unite with her beloved.
தத்துவனை வரக் கூகிற்றியாகில்
தலையல்லால் கைம்மாறிலேனே

You will get to know our love secrets
Andal reveals to the cuckoo that she is sharing many of her love stories. He is the one with the special Saranga bow and an ideal match for her and that that the two of them share many secrets. She addresses the cuckoo that is currently sipping nectar from the mango tree and asks her to go and call her Lord quickly. As a reward for the helping efforts, Andal promises to allow the cuckoo to watch her secret engagements with the beloved perched atop the tree.

நாங்கள் எமமிலிருந் தொட்டிய கச்சங்கம்
நானும் அவனும் அறிதும்

ஆங்கு விரைந்தொல்லைக் கூகிற்றியாகில்
அவனை நான் செய்வன காணோ

From request to bribe to threat
Having requested and motivated the cuckoo through the initial set of verses, Andal seems to have lost her patience towards the end as she moves on to now threatens the cuckoo providing him with just two choices for him to survive in those groves –

'Bring the Lord to me and secure back my lost bangles or else there will be no place for you in those beautiful nectar sipping groves'.

பொங்கொளி வண்டிரைக்கும் பொழில் வாழ்குயிலே
குறிக்கொண்டு இது நீ கேள்

சங்கொடு சக்கரத்தான் வரக் கூவுதல்
பொன்வளை கொண்டு தருதல்

இங்குள்ள காவினில் வாழக் கருதில்
இரண்டத் தொன்றேல் திண்ணம் வேண்டும்

She is shocked that even the moon light and the breeze are beginning to hurt her in her times of separation when she is being denied the opportunity of service to the Lord. And to add to her fury the Cuckoo continues to remain seated in front of her without taking her love message to the Lord. 
'If he does not fly to her beloved she warns the cuckoo that he will be driven out of those groves.'

இன்று நாராயணனை வரக் கூவாவேல்
இன்குற்று நின்றும் துரப்பன்

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