Tiruvaymoli (Thiruvaimozhi): English translation

by S. Satyamurthi Ayyangar | 388,514 words

This is the English translation of the Tiruvaymoli (or, Thiruvaimozhi): An ancient Tamil text consisting of 1102 verses which were sung by the poet-saint Nammalvar as an expression of his devotion to Vishnu. Hence, it is an important devotional book in Vaishnavism. Nammalvar is one of the twelve traditional saints of Tamil Nadu (Southern India), kn...

Tamil text and transliteration:

அசுரர்கள் தலைப்பெய்யில் எவன்கொல் ஆங்குஎன்று ஆழும் என்ஆர்உயிர் ஆன்பின் போகேல்
கசிகையும் வேட்கையும் உள்கலந்து கலவியும் நலியும் என்கை கழியேல்
வசிசெய் உன் தாமரைக் கண்ணும் வாயும் கைகளும் பீதக உடையும் காட்டி
ஒசிசெய் நுண்இடைஇள ஆய்ச்சியர்நீ உகக்கும் நல்லவரொடும் உழிதராயே

acurarkaḷ talaippeyyil evaṉkol āṅkueṉṟu āḻum eṉāruyir āṉpiṉ pōkēl
kacikaiyum vēṭkaiyum uḷkalantu kalaviyum naliyum eṉkai kaḻiyēl
vacicey uṉ tāmaraik kaṇṇum vāyum kaikaḷum pītaka uṭaiyum kāṭṭi
ocicey nuṇiṭaiiḷa āycciyarnī ukakkum nallavaroṭum uḻitarāyē

English translation of verse 10.3.8:

With fear does my dear life quiver what unto you might befall,
When You are away, tending the cattle; You’ll do well
Not to go behind the cows, Oh, Kaṇṇā, better stay here,
Leave me not, lest my boundless love for You shall thro’ every pore
Pierce poor me; I’d rather not mind Your flirting right here
With those other thin-waisted damsels You love whom You rope
Thro’ Your lotus eyes, hands and feet and Your silken robe.


Then Kṛṣṇa retorted that it was not merely a matter of His tending the cows but also His fulfilling His engagements with those other ladies, as the Gopīs had themselves hinted at. Here then is the interesting, rather impressive reply of the Gopī. She says: “All that I want is that You should be right in our presence. As a compromise, I would not even mind Your flirting with those other ladies of your heart, right here. You don’t have to go or send some one to fetch them. Your entrancing looks and Your sweet voice shall bring them unto you, your loving hands shall gather the bashful ones up and your silken robe shall obstruct those, bent down in the exhilaration of your touch and pull them upwards. Well, these constitute the messengers in question. It will suffice if you just put aside your upper garment and expose Your exquisite charm”.

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