1. Have an Interesting Snippet to Share : Click Here
    Dismiss Notice
  2. What can you teach someone online? Tell us here!
    Dismiss Notice
  3. If someone taught you via skype, what would you want to learn? Tell us here!
    Dismiss Notice

A Return Gift From The Birthday Baby

Discussion in 'Wednesdays with Varalotti' started by varalotti, Apr 30, 2008.

  1. varalotti

    varalotti IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    9,047
    Likes Received:
    1,236
    Trophy Points:
    340
    Gender:
    Male
    A Return Gift From A Birthday Baby!

    Children’s birthday parties in Chennai follow a beautiful tradition. The child’s friends, neighbours and relatives carry gifts for the birthday child.

    After cutting the cake and after a proper feast or a high tea and after some games when the friends are about to leave, the child gives them each a return gift.

    I love that tradition because it ensures that every child who is part of the celebration goes home with a gift in hand.

    There are some ground rules for the return gift. It has to be the same for every child. You can’t discriminate in favour of those who brought in expensive gifts for the child.

    No, that is in very bad taste. And it need not be expensive. It could be as simple as a plastic whistle, a tennis ball or gift-wrapped candies.

    And to honour my dear GFs who gave me precious gifts, I mean kind wishes and blessings coming from the depths of their hearts, I am giving a return gift, a gift that a mofussil accountant like me can afford, a gift as simple and as mundane as the plastic whistle or a tennis ball, the same gift for all the loving hearts, a poem, once again.

    The only deviation I am making from the tradition is that instead of giving the return gift at the end of the party, I am giving it a day later. This deviation is for a valid reason.

    A few persons to whom I showed this poem insisted that I should not post it on my birthday. ‘Sridhar, the poem is on death. I am not saying whether it is good or bad. But should you publish it on your birthday?’

    I bowed down to thelr love and am posting the poem now.

    Please remember, however, that this poem was not inspired by depression. Nor is it a manifestation of pessimism; it can never even be remotely described as a suicide note of a defeated person. It is the expression of the fullest happiness of a person who has lived a full life, a life of joys and sorrows, of pleasures and pains, of blessings and betrayals, of frustration and of fulfillment.

    People generally avoid talking about death unless it is absolutely necessary to do so. To avoid the one thing that is most certain to happen, could either be traced to our fear, in-built hypocrisy or a mere psychological defence mechanism. Our ancient scriptures did not want us to do that.

    In the Brahminical tradition after the sacred thread ceremony the 10 year old child stands before the setting sun every evening and prays to Death.

    Those of you who have sandhyavandhanam books handy can refer to the Yama Vandhanam portion which starts with “Yamaya, Dharmaraajaya….

    The child learns to be friends with death and this friendship will give a special vigour and vitality to the life of the child. My posting this poem on this day has a similar purpose.

    One of the world’s greatest insights into religion and philosophy, Kathopanishad, is nothing but a dialogue with death.

    What is death, Tagore asked, but the short gap when God, our mother, who is breast-feeding us, shifts us from her right breast to her left. Being ignorant children as we are, we shiver at the prospect of being away from our mother’s breast even if it is for a very short while.

    Now and only now, you are ready to read the poem. Go ahead. Enjoy the gift and tell me how you liked it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2008
    Loading...

  2. varalotti

    varalotti IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    9,047
    Likes Received:
    1,236
    Trophy Points:
    340
    Gender:
    Male
    God, Thy Angel Has Come!

    A Poem By Varalotti Rengasamy

    My weary eyes spy the unguarded door!
    God, Thy Angel has come to do her chore!

    I ask her in a trembling voice, “Is it not a journey long?
    She smiles and says, “You’ve got it all wrong

    “It’s not a journey but the journey’s end.
    Nor is it labour; but the final rest from all your labours.”

    “I’ve done my duty while it was yet day
    It’s night and I’m ready to go your way
    But what bothers me is the pain!”

    “Pain and pleasure, loss and gain
    Will come to you never again

    “What is there to feel the pain
    How can you ever feel the pleasure?
    When your body and your nerves
    When your brain and your mind
    And your ego are left behind!”

    “Can I ever see my wife or my child?
    Or my parents who gave me life
    Or my teachers who helped me live?
    Will I ever meet my friends?
    All those people whom I loved
    My brothers and sisters, of this world?”

    “No you won’t, in their present form
    But they, when their time doth come
    Will join us up over there!
    You will always feel their love
    As they always feel yours,
    Till the end of Time and further more!
    For time has a beginning and an end
    But Love was there before time
    And will be there after it too.
    Time is loveless, you always think
    Love is timeless, is the truth”

    “When all of us gather there
    You and I and all those souls
    The young and the old, the sick and the healthy
    The dead and the living
    The God and the Angels
    The Devil and the demons
    Will there be room enough
    Is that place large enough?”

    “Where we go, it’s not a place
    Nor is there the idea of ‘space’
    Time and space are mental props
    To make you grasp this mortal world
    The props are only for the forms
    Not for the substance; not for the One!
    Not for God and not for Love”

    I turn towards my sleeping wife
    ‘You are much more than my life’
    I think of her and my child
    In my heart is a longing mild
    “This is my life, this is my home
    How can I ever let them go?”


    “This is not your real home

    Just a carriage of a train
    And these are but your travel-mates

    The train will stop here for a while
    Get down fast, we need to go.
    We are now homeward bound!

    They will get down somewhere else
    When they hear the ringing bells! ”


    “Will you give me just a minute
    To talk to my people and tell my love?”

    “I sure will, but they won’t hear
    Yet their hearts will hear you speak!
    They will also know your love
    And having known, will let you go!”

    “Oh, my relatives, far and near
    And my friends, so very dear

    “Though I loved you to the core
    I did want to love you more
    My time has come;bid me adieu
    Give me leave and pray for me.”

    The stars are shining in the night
    As we pass them in our flight
    I leave a mark in the Northern Star
    Which I am sure, you’ll see
    When you do, think of me!
    - Varalotti Rengasamy
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. Devika Menon

    Devika Menon Gold IL'ite

    Messages:
    3,056
    Likes Received:
    55
    Trophy Points:
    130
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Varalotti Sir,

    An excellent poem, Your wordings were almost like James Henry Leigh Hunt, so fascinated was I , that I wished the poem wouldnt end. Beautiful verses!! Fabulous rhythm!!

    You took us through the journey of death but it wasnt depressing, it wasnt negative.It was very pragmatic and aesthetically done with no signs of wallowing.

    With these skills is it any wonder that you are termed the wonder writer with a nation (IL) for fan following.

    A return gift I shall treasure for life.!!

    Love,
    Devika
     
  4. Malathijagan

    Malathijagan Silver IL'ite

    Messages:
    1,292
    Likes Received:
    30
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Female
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2008
  5. Kamla

    Kamla IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    8,444
    Likes Received:
    5,056
    Trophy Points:
    440
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Sridhar,

    You are very kind and clever. With your first post, you have somewhat prepared us for what's to come. If not, I too would have said why this and why now!

    There is no doubt that the poem is a very valuable gift. It is almost like you have grown right in front of our eyes and are now this wonderful poet! So very well written. The verses are built so well and the words sit very naturally. Enjoyed reading it.

    The meaning too is very profound. And what you say is true, why have apprehensions about death which we know is the only sure thing that is going to happen to all of us? All the same, I am thankful that we are blessed with this Maya and need not dwell upon it!

    Having said that, just some minutes ago, I replied to an ILite who had written so soulfully about her father's demise. Besides, I am presently reading Mitch Albom's 'The Five People You Meet in Heaven' and now this, thanks to you :)

    L, Kamla
     
  6. Malathijagan

    Malathijagan Silver IL'ite

    Messages:
    1,292
    Likes Received:
    30
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Sridhar,
    In my hurry to go through your poem I missed out on your prelude which is equally good as your poem!

    So you have decided on a common gift in the form of a poem?! Well that was a wonderful gift!

    Such emotional poems cannot come in times of depression. During times of depressions the words are of a negative nature which hurt the people who go through it or who may have been the provocation for such a poem. Only when we are fully satisfied in life can such beautiful thoughts flow from one's heart!
    I only feel sympathy for those people who are scared of death! But alas a majority of people are!
    I had written a poem to Yama too about 12 or 15 years back in Tamil in a different mood than that of yours. I give it below for you to judge my mood!

    Oh, Yama Dharma Rajane!
    Un Naaledugalil
    enru kuRRiththirukkiradhu en mudivu?
    Adhai Naan aRiyen!
    Aanaal Poruththiruppaayaga,
    Yaam piRandha pyanai
    Innum Adayen
    Kadmaikal kaaththirukkinRana!
    Adhnaal Kaaththiru!

    Dharmaththin Thalaivane!
    Azhaippinri VAAraadhe!
    Kadamaikal muddiyattum!
    Iru karam kuuppi varaverpen!
    Appoothu azaiththu poo!
    Swargaththin Vaayilukku
    Adhu varai Kaathiru!
    Porumaiyudan Kaaldeva!

    (Written in 1994)



    regards,
    Malathi

     
  7. geeth

    geeth Senior IL'ite

    Messages:
    258
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear varalotty sir,
    A valuable retrun gift indeed!! It really fascinated me!! Wonderful poem sir. though you prepared us with your first post about the mood of the poem, but i donot find any pessimism or depression r negativism in it because of the carefully chosen words. the following lines are my favourite

     
  8. geeth

    geeth Senior IL'ite

    Messages:
    258
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear malathy,
    your poem too is really good! Not a negative one i feel...it is like savithri's request to yama but with a different request!!

    regards
    geeth
     
  9. Lalitha Shivaguru

    Lalitha Shivaguru Platinum IL'ite

    Messages:
    3,774
    Likes Received:
    309
    Trophy Points:
    215
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Sridhar,

    You have given us a treasure it is not an ordinary gift and this one I will treasure.

    In the prelude, when I read, I was thinking enna 50 illa enlightenment ayivittara sridhar endru but after going thru the whole post, I knew you are already enlightened

    .

    These lines confirmed the same. Hats off to you dear.

    Tagore's words are very profound and I just loved the same.
    “Where we go, it’s not a place
    Nor is there the idea of ‘space’
    Time and space are mental props
    To make you grasp this mortal world
    The props are only for the forms
    Not for the substance; not for the One!
    Not for God and not for Love”


    Dear Sridhar, I need to quote the whole poem, but it is simply divine. I agree with you people are afraid of death but I do wonder why? when we look forward for a birth then why not death? these are my My 2cents
     
  10. Lalitha Shivaguru

    Lalitha Shivaguru Platinum IL'ite

    Messages:
    3,774
    Likes Received:
    309
    Trophy Points:
    215
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Malathi,

    A real beautiful one by you. Sabash, sariyana potti !!
     

Share This Page