Subhashitaya Gnomic Verses by Alagiyavanna

Subhashitaya (Boris mots). These are didactic maxims of a worldly nature, derived from Sanskrit and Tamil sources, and versified by .


Whatever their misfortunes be, the great and noble all
Ease pain in hearts of other men in this world come to birth.
Though into fearsome Rahu's jaws one side of her may fall,
Yet with her other side the moon still shines upon the earth.


To help wise men if e'er a trifling service should be done,
Its memory lives eternally like letters carved in stone.
No matter how much good is done to succour foolish men,
Its memory will vanish like lines traced upon the main.


Each of us has his qualities, ugly or beautiful.
A blameless man has never in this world been born.
The thousand-petalled lotus is of softest pollen full,
Yet has a stalk that's rough with row on row of thorn.


In this world every man has talent at a single game,
The while his fellow-worker at some other thing is good.
No matter how much wind there be, or what the strength of flame,
Never a ship will go on land, or chariot on a flood.


Though there are men enormously rich, kings unfailingly see
That their business is done by virtuous men. And likewise
though there may be Wealth untold amounting to millions in secret places,
Still people use simple mirrors of steel to look at their faces.


The moon with her attendant host of many a scattered star,
Illumining the world with soothing nectar-beams afar,
Shines not when she has met the sun; and thus however great
A man may be, seems he not small within another's gate?


Though there be wealth of every sort whose limits can't be told,
To covet is the beggars' way, their hearts with greed brimfull.
himself, with eye on brow1 and grim strength, roams the world
In a small bullock-cart drawn b y an old decrepit bull.