Come To Sādhanakēri (ಬಾರೊ ಸಾಧನಕೇರಿಗೆ)

One of Da Ra Bendre’s most popular ಹಾಡುಗಬ್ಬs (hāḍugabba: ~song-poem), he wrote it as a ಸ್ವಗತ (swagata: ~soliloquy) when the unexpected loss of his job forced him to return to his house “ಶ್ರೀಮಾತಾ (shrīmāta)” in Sādhanakēri, Dharwad.

Here is a recording of my reciting (singing) the original Kannada poem. The tune, if one is discernible, is Praveen Godkhindi’s; and was originally recorded by Pallavi Arun. (Unfortunately, Ms. Pallavi’s recording is missing the third stanza of the poem.)

Come To Sādhanakēri (ಬಾರೊ ಸಾಧನಕೇರಿಗೆ)

Come to Sādhanakēri,
back to your town where you were merry.

To the chariot pulled by the rains;
the green has risen on the plains;
the green has grown into the town;
the green has spread to paths around.
A very piece of heaven’s fallen here;
is there anyone it does not cheer?
Come to Sādhanakēri,
back to your town where you were merry.

The mountain’s face itself has turned;
the koel’s songs are sweetly tuned;
the fences are flower-fingered;
the land’s youth has returned;
and earth-mother’s stretched and risen;
for shrāvaṇa’s rich it is the season.
Come to Sādhanakēri,
back to your town where you were merry.

See the shadow-play of the clouds above;
the multitude of forest-flowers;
the countless honey-bees that hover;
the spell beneath the yakshi’s bower.
Come watch the groups of butterflies
as they flutter round in their meadow-play.
Come to Sādhanakēri,
back to your town where you were merry.

The trees have stretched toward the sky;
within the shrubs are songs of play;
the wind itself wings all around;
all anxiousness has fled this ground.
Tell me, friend, where else is there
a sight like this, a sight so fair?
Come to Sādhanakēri,
back to your town where you were merry.

(Translated by Madhav K. Ajjampur)

Poem Details: From the collection “ಗಂಗಾವತರಣ,” first published in 1951.

Afterword:

For a change, I’ve sung the translation.

Author: MKA

I'm Madhav, from Bangalore. I write my own poetry in English and translate Da Ra Bendre's poetry from Kannada into English. (You can read my poetry at https://madhavajjampurwritings.com/). I also translate sundry other Kannada writings into English. My favourite poets include Yeats, Tagore, Bendre, Dylan Thomas, Emily Dickinson, and Gerard Hopkins. If you'd like to get in touch, do write to me at mk.ajjampur@gmail.com. I'd be very happy to hear from you!

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