I am like the water in a pot;
You don’t put stones in me,
And make them come in the top!
I am only a bamboo stick;
You don’t put holes in me
And make me a musical flute!
I am only a budding poet;
You don’t give comment
And make me a number one poet!
I am only a wooden ladder;
You don’t stand near me
And make me to appear longer!
I am just like a grass field;
You don’t daily walk on me
And not make a new path on me!
No doubt I am only a zero;
You don’t treat me like an arrow
And make me a big hero!
Kannadasa Dasan (birth name Manoharan), widely considered the foremost modern poet in Bangalore, India was born in Bangalore, Karnataka state, India on 14 of April 1962. He holds a Master of Arts degree in Political Science and joined the Indian Postal Department as a Clerk in 1991.
Kannadasa started writing poetry at the age of 16 in Thamil, an Indian language and his first poem, ‘Love’ was published in his college magazine when he was 17 years old.
He writes on every subjects. Reading and writing poetry are his hobbies.
He has published his Thamil poems in 4 volumes, with each having 208 pages between 2009 to 2011 and is now I am writing for my 5th volume. His poems poems have been published in several Thamil magazines.
In Bangalore, there is a Thamil association which conducts monthly Poetry Summit where a poet is chosen as the best poet of the month and Kannadasa has been chosen more than 70 times in the past 20 years.
Kannadasa Dasan has participated in 7 Thamil TV talk shows.
He currently lives in India with my wife and two children, a son and a daughter.
The Birth of ‘Kannadasa Dasan’
Kannadasa Dasan’s original birthname was Manoharan, he changed his name to Kannadasa Dasan in 1985 in honour of one of his favorite poets.
There was a great poet name Bharathiyar who wrote in Thamil language who died in 1921. Manoharan was very much inspired by his poems and that of his Bharathidasan who also died in 1970.
Another poet who influeced him was named Kannadasan Kannadasa died in 1985.
That same year Manoharan changed his name to KANNADASA DASAN [DASAN means disciple or student].
Journey into English Poetry
In 2012, Kannadasa Dasan started writing poems in English. Within 2 months he translated some of his Thamil poems into English and for the past 6 months, he has been writing in English on new subjects.
Good poets like you [Kukogho Iruesiri Samson] encouraged and are encouraging me to write poetry in English. I must thank online poets like you and Facebook in particular.
The standard of Thamil poetry, particularly in the Thamil cinema is going down day by day and this motivates me to write on different subjects, in my own way and in a different styles.
I have never met a more humble poet than Sir Kannadasa Dasan. I have always though he was a youth until he sent me his profile details. Why? he was always self effacing in our Facebook chats and messages.
Later, I discovered he has been writing poetry and winning awards before I was born and his style and themes are so simple yet impeccable.