Floods are like Vanaras

மலை எடுத்து மரங்கள் பறித்து மாடு
இலை முதல் பொருள் யாவையும் ஏந்தலான்
அலை கடல் தலை அன்று அணை வேண்டிய
நிலை உடைக் கவி நீத்தம் அந் நீத்தமே.

Ferrying rocks, uprooting trees,
bringing with them leaves and stuff –
When Rama asked to build a bridge across the sea
what the horde of vanaras did was similar to these floods.

Kamban uses a future event (the horde of vanaras) in the story as a simile to the present (floods). Calling Hanuman, Vali and Sugreevan as monkeys or apes doesn’t convey the meaning and demeans them. So in this translation I plan to call them vanaras as in Sanskrit.


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