Gems of Telugu poetry –‘Satakamu’ (5)

A person should know his limits and behave – this is the advice elders give to younger generation.  This means, one has to behave within his own limits to keep his respect in society with others. With a view to imbue this advice to children, it was poetized in ‘sumatii Satakamu’ in the most apt and heartening way in the following poem:

“kamalamulu  niiTa  baasina
kamalaaptuni  raSmi  soeki  kamalina  bhaMgin
tamatama  nelavulu  dappina
tama  mitrulu  SatrulouTa  tadhyamu sumatii!”

“కమలములు నీట బాసిన
కమలాప్తుని రశ్మి సోకి కమలిన భంగిన్
తమతమ నెలవులు దప్పిన
తమ మిత్రులు శత్రులౌట తధ్యము సుమతీ!” 

“As the lotuses when placed out of pond waters
Wilt under the heat of the Sun, the dearest one to lotuses,
So is it certain for a man that his own friend will turn out a foe
When behaved out of their usual context, oh fair-minded brethren!”

It is a known fact that lotuses bloom during the day and lose their luster as the sunshine disappears with sunset.  The Sun is, therefore, considered in poetic sense as the dearest one to lotuses.  However, even He cannot control the harm that is done to the lotuses when placed out of the pond waters, the place the lotuses should naturally be.  This phenomenon was hearteningly used by the poet who authored ‘sumatii Satakamu’ to convey the advice that a person should never try to be out of his own demeanor and behave out of context which naturally will result in things going adverse to him when his own friends may not be in a position to save him.

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