4 May 2010

Engirundhu Vandhaayadaa from Five Star

One of the things I like about web is that you get ideas and inspirations from people you don't know.  Inspired by Thinkala's song translations, I am attempting a translation of a Tamil song.  A favourite of mine, no need to say.  In the movie, this song is sung by a girl whose husband runs away immediately after their wedding.  She awaits his return, and this song she sings in someone else's wedding.

I am trying to translate it without ruining the beauty of poetry.  But then, translating poetry is hard, and more so if you are not an expert in both languages.  Please leave a comment if you have a better translation for any part of the song.

The song is here:

Engirundhu vandhaayadaa -- nee
Enai paadu padutha?
Engu kondu sendraayada -- naan
Enai thedi edukka?
Inbam thunbam thunbam inbam
Inbam endru nee
Sogam rendum kodukka
Sugam rendum kodukka

Where did you come from to trouble me?
Where did you take me to?
How'd I find myself?
Joy and sorrow, sorrow and joy,
You gave them both to me[1]

Vaanavillaay aanum vannam ezhaay pennum
Irundhaal innum vaanin azhagu koodum

Sky would be more beautiful
When the man is rainbow, and
Woman, its seven colours.

Suttu viralaay neeyum kattai viralaay naanum
Ezhudhum edhuvum kavidhaiyaaga maarum

With you as the index finger, and I as the thumb
Everything we write would transform as poetry[2]

Vidaamale unai thodarndhidum enai
Ore oru murai manadhinil ninai

Think of me only once,
The one following you always.

Ennai enna seydhaayada?

What have you done to me?

Vaasal vaazhaiyodu vaarthaiyaadal aachu
Iniyum pesa pudhiya kadhaigal edhu?

There isn't more stories to share with the banana tree
That stands in our threshold, talking to me.

Oruvar vaazhum ulagil mounam dhaane pechu
Mozhigal edharku iruvar inaiyum bodhu?

In a world of single person, silence is all talk.
When two unite as one, who needs languages?

Vizhaakkalil ival thanithirukkiraal
Kanaakkalil dhinam vizhithirukkiraal

This girl is alone in all celebration gatherings.
And she's awake in dreams.

Ennai enna seydhaayadaa?

What have you done to me?

[1] This is a super-diluted translation where I've devoured the poetry; sorry about that.  I will make an attempt to atone for it by giving meanings to individual words so you get a better idea of the lyrics.
inbam = joy, pleasure, etc.
thunbam = suffering, sorrow, etc.
nee = you (naan = I)
sogam = sadness
rendum = both (it comes from rendu (in spoken Tamil), which means two; it's written as irandu)
kodukka = to give
sugam = pleasure, happiness

[2] The man and the woman as the fingers holding a pen


  1. I had forgotten how beautiful this song is.

    Only thing I would have said differently:

    Engu kondu sendraayada -- naan
    Enai thedi edukka? I would have translated this as "where did you take me to, for me to find myself". Not sure if I am interpreting it wrongly or too literally. But I don't see it as "how'd I find myself?"

    Then again if you give a piece of text to anyone to translate, there will be as many versions as they are people. Also, any piece of prose or poetry can be made better. Always :)

  2. Thanks Nags, for the comment. Actually, I like your translation better. When I was writing down mine, I was a little puzzled about how to translate that line. Your version sounds much better.