This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.



Saturday, 13 February 2016

Coromandel Fishers by Sarojini Naidu.

Sarojini Naidu: 

Sarojini Naidu in Bombay 1946.jpg

was born one hundred and thirty seven years ago today.

As a poet she was known as the Nightingale of India, but in her day job she was the first woman governor of an Indian State (Agra and Oudh). 

Yes, an extraordinary woman.

Here's one of her poems, written (so fortunately for us) in English. It's very much of its time, but there's nothing wrong with that: the lure and mystery and companionship of the sea will, I think, be part of human life for ever.

Coromandel Fishers

Rise, brothers, rise; the wakening skies pray to the morning light,
The wind lies asleep in the arms of the dawn like a child that has cried all night.
Come, let us gather out nets from the shore and set our catamarans free,
To capture the leaping wealth of the tide, for we are the kings of the sea!

No longer delay, let us hasten away in the track of the sea gull's call,
The sea is our mother, the cloud is our brother, the waves are our comrades all.
What though we toss at the fall of the sun where the hand of the sea-god drives?
He who holds the storm by the hair, will hide in his breast our lives.

Sweet is the shade of the cocoanut glade, and the scent of the mango grove,
And sweet are the sands at the full o' the moon with the sound of the voices we love;
But sweeter, O brothers, the kiss of the spray and the dance of the wild foam's glee;
Row, brothers, row to the edge of the verge, where the low sky mates with the sea.

Word To Use Today: catamaran. This word comes from the Tamil word kattumaram, which means tied timber.


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