Class of Poetry
Posted by alfred seneviratne on August 03, 2009 at 20:13:32

In the class of Poetry of 28 students of different Ethnic Origins, our teacher gave an assignment in translation of Asian Poetry; one being a famous 'Gami Kavi' into English:
"Matara Gange sitina Kimbulige Patiya
Thalla suduie, Belle gomara katiya
Yana Ena Paru, Nawagthagena sitiya
Minie Nokai Matara Kimbulige Patiya".

My translation:
"Fat Crocadile's littleone in the river,
With white throte and decorated neck;
Boats that move up and down kept still.
Fat Crocadile's littleone will not eat Human flesh."

The translation of the rest of the Class more or less not much of a difference to mine. We were surpried to note the hearty laughter of ouer teacher - Miss Rivers, who explained the base of the poem.
Matara is a well known Town in Sri Lanka. At the bank
of the famous river there was a small resturant whose young daughter was pretty and not rough and arragont as the owner of the eatery that serve food, drinks, and other essenetials that cross the river; where all passing boats regularly stop over. Comparing the rough mother to the good natured daughter; the Poet praises her as the non eating human-flesh one; referring to the arragonce of the Bossy Mother.
Coming from down South, I felt guilty and pretend to be sad in my stupid translation. Noticing this Miss Rivers,
Keeping me within the context and mentioned; "At least Alfred shed 'Crocadile tears' as the saying goes"

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