Thursday, October 30, 2008

Poet Vairamuthu

Vairamuthu is The ‘Emperor of Poetry’ who rules the Hearts of the Tamil youth

From Atlanta to Australia, wherever Tamils live, Vairamuthu is a household name. He is definitely an icon for Tamils who have a flair for literature. Hailed as a role model of young poets, he deserves all the praise showered on him by all sects of people.

Kannadasan, a magnanimous personality, openly accepted the fact that Vairamuthu is second to none in his creative talents and poetic genius. In cinema Vairamuthu has achieved a Himalayan victory in a very young age.

He is well-versed in conventional poetry and his talent in poetic symposia is unique.

His genius in technique and his maturity in contents are a rare combination.

Many people boasted of their English knowledge and always quoted Ezra Pound and T.S.Eliot whenever they wanted to speak of Tamil poetry.

But Vairamuthu by his superb poetic works made everybody keep mum.

In Seventies everybody hailed Imagism and quoted English quotations to explain images in Tamil poetry.

If you just have a look of Vairamuthu’s poems his creativity and powerful images will astound you.

In 1972 he has authored a poem under the title ‘Waves’.

Here in this poem you can see a multitude of poetic images, which are unique in their form and content.


Mountains made of water

Dancing on the sea!

Magical hands of the ocean!

The ropes made up of water

By the adventurous wind!

Fibrous dresses

Stripped from the Sea -Maid

By the villainy wind

Philosophic commentaries of

The ocean of reason

The rolled-up mattresses of

The heavenly bed


Are you committing suicide

In the seashore?

Is it possible?

Is it justified?

Is it proper?

What will be the end?

White breasts covered with

White bed linen?

Is water itself shelling bombs?

The drama troupe conducting folk dance

Always unsuccessful!

Mountains of phlegm

Spit up by the black ocean

Affected by tuberculosis and

Coughing continuously!

Butter veils

Formed by the emission of

The oceanic black curd

While churned!

You are the

Dreams of the sea which

Disappear at the shore!

Kisses given by the sea

On the shore cheeks!

Walls made of water

Rushing up speedily

Breaking cracking and

Shattering into pieces!

Always teaching us the reality

That nothing is permanent in life!

Bootlickers of the deep sea!

Please wait a while

I have to utter something

To the damsels

You are under the wrong notion that

The wind is blowing of the lamps

Have you ever thought of the blue sea?

The wind maids are igniting

The white lamps -called waves-

Which are always there

Even after the sunrise!

Have you forgotten this?

Oh! Green waves!

Coral shadows!

The downtrodden

Getting melted in the

Scorching sun

Are dreaming to

Break into pieces

The walls of the palaces

Like that

The waves are suffering a lot

To put under siege

The beautiful damsel-Moon!

Oh Inflations of the ocean

Created by the wind!

Do not try in vain!

In this world

The under-privileged

Will definitely

Overthrow the hegemony of

The affluent minority!

I swear in the fiery red blood!

The poet with a deep vision looks waves, which we see casually. The prime duty of the poet is to remove the film of familiarity. Vairamuthu, not only removes the film of familiarity, but also sees new visions and gives new meanings to routine things.

An ‘Image’ is a thing, which gives both an intellectual appeal and emotional appeal at an instant of time. Pound told just one image is enough for a poem.

Here the poet creates a kaleidoscopic variety of Images.

Waves are visualized in various forms.


Walls made of water,

Ropes made of water

Mountains of phlegm

Fibrous dresses

Rolled up mattresses

White breasts covered with white linens

White lamps

Coral shadows

For every image the poet also explains its context in the poem.

The poet does not want just to show his creative skills but he has a commitment and social outlook. He imagines that the waves try regularly to put the moon under siege .He ridicules their vain attempt but he tells his firm belief that a day or other the have-nots will succeed in their attempts to overthrow the hegemony of the aristocrats.

This single poem itself stands as a monumental evidence for the poetic genius of Vairamuthu.

He never wastes his time in praising or attacking any single individual or any organization.

It is quite clear that he wants a socialist set-up for the welfare of everybody, from his poems. His atheism does not hurt anybody.

Vairamuthu has given the Tamils a treasure-trove of literature.

It is our duty to read them and propagate the values insisted by the poet.

I am sure that if we pursue with consistency a golden era will usher in.