Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Nanduri Subbarao and his 'Enki Paatalu'

The set of romantic poems 'Enti Paatalu' written by Nanduri Subbarao is well known to telugu-speaking people. Nanduri Venkata Subba Rao (1895-1957) conceptualized the idea of 'Enki Paatalu' during his student days of BA at Madras Christian College, around 1917-18. Though the writings of Gurajada Apparao in spoken language were well known to people at that time, using such language in literature was still considered unusual. He used the dialects of Godavari and Visakha areas in his poems and received mixed criticism among his peers and friends. The first edition of 'Enki Paatalu' was released in 1925. After a long gap of 27 years, the second edition was released with some new songs added. The poems left an indelible mark on the Telugu language and literature.

'Enki' and 'Naidu Bava' are the main characters of the poems. 'Enki' is a washer-woman who is in deep love with 'Naidu Bava'. The central theme of poems is the love and romance between them. Eminent writers and thinkers like Adavi Bapiraju, Sri Sri, Chalam, Devulapalli Krishna Sastry adored 'Enki Paatalu' and wrote about the songs. But the work gained real popularity due to the radio and music concerts. 'Nanduri Enki pata laga' (just like Nanduri Enki song) has become a common expression to depict something pleasant and beautiful.

You can access the songs as a pdf here. I got the recordings of about 31 songs ( 32 kbps - the audio quality is not that good) sung by none other than Sri M. Balamurali Krishna and Sri Srirangam Gopalarathnam. It is a real pleasure to listen to these songs sung by the stalwarts of the music, which inspired me to write this article.

The rest of the post contains two wonderful songs from the work. Though it is beyond my capabilities and knowledge to write about these songs, this is a humble attempt to bring these songs closer to the people of my generation who almost forgot the existence of such master pieces. The first song is 'Intenate Sandra Mentho Yanukonti' (MP3).
Intenate Sandra Mentho Yanukonti
Manku Sooridukoo Maddenundena!
Naa Neethi Naa Jaathi
Naavaare Poonada
Marigi Manasu Sa
garamaaye Nannaru Inthe...
Naa Raaje Naa Kaasi
Veru Soopulu Sooda
Kadalivale Naa Gunde
Kalathabade Nannaru Inthe...
Saththemerigina Paapa
Poththillalo Daagi
Kanneeru Munneru
Karagisthi Mannaru Inthe...
Anchudari Ledante
Amruthamuntadante
Demudanthuntaado
Emo Yanukunnanu Inthe...

Fortunately, I found a translation of this song in the book 'Hibiscus on the Lake' written by Valcheru Narayana Rao.

The ocean is so small.
It only fills the little space between us and the sun, that's all!
When my own people talked of me and my morals, my pain,
you said, was huge like the ocean. Is this all! The ocean is so small!
When my man looked at me as if I was not his woman, my heart,
you said, moaned like the ocean. Is this all! The ocean is so small!
When I held my baby, who knows the truth, I cried,
you said, an ocean of tears. Is this all! The ocean is so small!
When you said it has no end, no shore, and it holds eternal life,
I thought it was big, big like God. Is this all! The ocean is so small!


The second song is 'Enki Tho Theerthanikellali' (MP3) and is titled 'Pillodu' (The child). Click on the image for the telugu lyrics to be visible clearly.

Enkitho Theerthanikellali,
Sankalo Pillodu Sambralupaduthunte!
Enkitho Theerthanikellali,
Neththi Mootalaneththukovali!
Koththa Madathala Deesikattali!
Adavi Daarula Yenta Nadavali!
Baruvu Maarusukonta Phakkunna Navvali!
Enkitho Theerthanikellali!
Sankalo Pillodu Sambralupaduthunte!
Thathanaati Voosu Talavali!
Daaripoduguna Keesuladali!
'Tappuneede' Yanta Deppali!
Daivamunnadaani Dhadipinchukovali!
Enkitho Theerthanikellali!
Sankalo Pillodu Sambralupaduthunte!
Enkitho Theerthanikellali!
Kathakaada Koosintha Nilavali!
Kathagaadu Maavoose Seppali!
Nanu Soosi Pillodu Navvali!
Maalona Maameto Mathulirusukovali!
Enkitho Theerthanikellali!
Sankalo Pillodu Sambralupaduthunte!
Enkitho Theerthanikellali!
Konetilo Tanamaadali!
Gudisuttu Mummaru Tiragali!
Kopaalu Taapalu Manaali!
Iddaramu Pillonni Eesudiki Soopali!
Enkitho Theerthanikellali!
Sankalo Pillodu Sambralupaduthunte!
Enkitho Theerthanikellali!

Since I could not find a translation of the above song, I dared to provide a very approximate translation of the above. Please excuse me for any mistakes. I am sure this is not the best and feel free to let me know the if any changes required.

I should go to the holy place with Enki!
While the boy in my lap is rejoicing!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!
We should put the luggage on our heads!
We should wear new clothes!
We should walk through the forests!
While changing the weight from one hand to another, we should laugh!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!
While the boy in my lap is rejoicing!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!
We should talk about the old times!
We should fight all along the way!
We should scorn at each other, 'its your fault'!
We should warn each other that the God is watching!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!
While the boy in my lap is rejoicing!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!
We should stop at the story teller!
The story teller should tell our story!
The boy should look at me and laugh!
We should forget ourselves and rejoice!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!
While the boy in my lap is rejoicing!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!
We should take a bath in the holy water!
We should walk around the temple!
We should control our anger!
We should show our boy to the God!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!
While the boy in my lap is rejoicing!
I should go to the holy place with Enki!


References:

7 comments:

Cptn. Jack Sparrow said...

Hello,

Do you have the music collection of Nanduri Yenki Patalu made by M.M. Keeravani. Please let me know.

Thank You,
Sai

Navya said...

its a awesome work.. i loved the first one..

altitude18k said...

So many thanks for this post. I appreciate your efforts fully.

Obulpathi N Challa said...

Great work! Do you know any place where I can get high quality recordings of these songs?

Nagasrinivasa Rao said...

it is a great work, some of these enki patalu have therapeutically benefits also. in the way you are helping so many of present folks.

Satya said...

Thank you all for your comments.

@Obulpathi N Challa: I could not find any high quality recordings except the ones I mentioned in the blog post.

Shravani Davuluri said...

Nanduri subbarao garu is my grand grand father proud to say that :)