Friday, 5 October 2012


N. Kumaran Asan (Malayalam:കുമാരനാശാന്‍) (1873–1924), also known as Mahakavi Kumaran Asan (the prefix Mahakavi awarded by Madras University in the year 1922 means "great poet" and the suffix Asan meaning scholar or teacher), was one of the triumvirate poets of Kerala, South India. He was also a philosopher, a social reformer and a disciple of Sree Narayana Guru.

Kumaran Asan initiated a revolution in Malayalam poetry in the first quarter of the 20th century, transforming it from the metaphysical to the lyrical. Deep moral and spiritual commitment is evident in Asan's poetry. His works are an eloquent testimony of poetic concentration and dramatic contextualization.


    Sthothrakrithikal (1901)

    This is a collection of poems. The poems published in this volume are longer than those published in Manimaala.

    Saundaryalahari (1901)

    Veenapoovu (1907)

    Asan scripted this epoch-making poem in 1907 during his sojourn in Jain Medu, Palakkad.[1] A highly philosophical poem, ‘Veena Poovu’ is an allegory of the transience of the mortal world, which is depicted through the description of the varied stages in the life of a flower. Asan describes in such detail about its probable past and the position it held. It is an intense sarcasm on people on high powers/positions finally losing all those. The first word Ha, and the last word Kashtam of the entire poem is often considered as a symbolism of him calling the world outside "Ha! kashtam".

Oru Simhaprasavam (1909)
    Nalini (Subtitle: Allengkil Oru Sneham) (1911)

    Leela (1914)

    A deep love story in which Leela leaves madanan, her lover and returns to find him in forest in a pathetic condition. She thus realizes the fundamental fact 'Mamsanibhadamalla ragam' (Love is not an artifact of flesh)

    Sribuddhacharitham (1915)

    This is an epic poem (perhaps Kumaran Asan's longest work), written in couplets and divided into five parts.

    Baalaraamaayanam (1916)

    This is a shorter epic poem consisting of 267 verses. Most of these verses are couplets, with the exception of the last three quatrains. There are, therefore, 540 lines in all.

    Graamavrikshattile Kuyil (1918)
    Prarodanam (1919)
    Chintaavishtayaaya Sita (1919)
    Pushpavaadi (1922)
    Duravasthha (1922)
    Chandaalabhikshuki (1922)

    This poem, divided into four parts and consisting of couplets, describes an untouchable beggar-woman" (also the name of the poem) who approaches Lord Ananda near Sravasti.

    Karuna (1923)

    Manimaala (1924)

    This is a collection of short poems.

    Vanamaala (1925)

    This is a larger collection of poems of varying length.

Kumaran Asan also wrote many other poems. Some of these poems are listed in the book Asante Padyakrthikal under the name "Mattu Krthikal" (Other Works):

    Sariyaaya Parishkaranam

    Pravaasakaalaththu Naattile Ormakal

    This is another collection of poems that come from various letters Kumaran Asan wrote over the course of several years. None of the poems were longer than thirty-two lines.

    Koottu Kavitha

The other poems are lesser known. Only a few of them have names:


    Oru Kathth

    This is another one of Asan's letter-poems.

    Randu Aasamsaapadyangal



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