Translations from Naachiyaar Thirumozai,
The Sacred Songs of the Lady

Pasuram 8

Dark Rain Clouds Be My Messengers

In this hymn, Aandaal employs one of the conventions of ancient Tamil love poetry by requesting monsoon clouds to be her messenger to her love, God of the Universe.

Verse 1.

Dark cloud roof unfurling beneath
the roof of the covering sky
Do you herald the coming of my lord Tirumal from high
Venkata hill where the bright waterfall plunge?
My tears, luminous, stream between the full
hills of my breasts
I am not to weep; yet he makes me break my vow,
how does this honour him?

She also says:

Vast curly vault veiling
the sky’s star drizzled dome

Does your darkness hide
his gleaming darkness from which brightness plunges

as shimmering cascades
into my body’s wet valleys?

I weep, forsaking secrecy.
How could my coursing silver illumine his glory?

And this:

My love
vast star-filled
overcast

in separation.
Still I flow
a stream lightening –struck
leaping

to lustrate
you
see my glory

5.

Monsoon clouds that spread across
the sky, slash it
raining torrents, as you shake the honey-heavy blossoms
of Vengadam and scatter scented petals
go tell the dark lord who killed Hiranya
ripping him with paws of fury
that he has robbed me of my bangles.
He must return them to me now!

She also says:

Dark whirling clouds you enlarge in anger, growl and roll
across the skies rending it open

with rain, lightning bolts, tearing
flowers, spilling honey ,clotting petals like blood on earth

go to the fiercest lord who plunged his claws in Hiranya roaring
mane tossing as his bloody paws ripped insides out

tell him I’ve grown thin with longing, bangles slip from wrists
He must restore me, must heal me with his touch.

And this:

engorged with anger
nails extending you kill
plunging wrists in

these very hands I seek
to caress me
gathering my swollen ripeness in

as
spilling nectar
my body’s blood flower bursts

7.

From within the milky ocean awash with gems did
the great churning bubble out treasures
in his avatar as Kurma, submerged tortoise. Descend, clouds, down
to the lotus feet of passionate Vengadam’s lord and lay
there my request: surrender.
Fragrant saffron paste covers my breasts, that must be wipe
on him; he must embrace me if only for a day or I waste away.

She also says:

Splendid the cosmic ocean spreads
Spinning constellations plucked from its depths shimmer

on waves as the great churning begins — before
Time. Lotus eyed Nayarana, the Eternal

One caused this to be. Dive deep clouds and lay
me at his lotus crimsoned feet. Tell him of my

surrender; tell him to wash my body’s scarlet longing
for just today or else I die.

And this:

Churn
churn
Time’s great ocean, each second, each eternity

Churn away my adornments
Churn my body’s milk
Churn me red

from my ocean
churn out my truest self
Let me rise to you my love
or let me die

9.

Great thunderheads that rear as intoxicated elephants
over Vengadam’s forested emerald summit
Ask him who makes his bed on the colossal coils of the sacred
serpent what words he said to me.
He, Protector of All is false
with me, a maiden slender and trusting.
In what light will the world judge him if he betrays
me, tortures me instead? Shouldn’t he protect his name?

She also says:

Dark thunderheads that clash like rut –mad elephants, trumpeting
with trunks entwined over verdant Vengadam’s peak

ask him who sleeps on the serpent’s stupendous loops to awaken
to my distress, to be not twisted

in his words. He, Supreme Guardian guards
me not as he slumbers, head secure beneath the snake’s reared hood.

I blossom in love, a vine yearning to wrap myself on him. How
will universes evaluate him if he lets me die?

And this:

coiled twisted
thunderheads
coiled twisted
words of succor

ask me
tender vine extending
what words of love should be.

save yourself resplendence
by loving me
my love
expanding over universes expanding

10.

To him who reclines on the great serpent Kodai prays
with deep longing. She of the fine forehead

Sings entreating rain clouds
to place her plea at his ruby feet

She is the daughter of the chief of Srivilliputur
who lacks nothing

Those who chant these verses with true devotion will forever
be blessed by the lord of high Vengadam.




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