`Odipponavan’ means (male) who ran away! It is a novel written for children, by my late father K.Navasothy, published back in 1968 in Sri Lanka. It has been used as part of reading lists in Tamil Schools a long time ago, in a land far far away. The story is the sad and troubled life of a boy, and the end is tearful.
I remember reading it when I was a small boy. I don’t remember what I said to my father afterwards. I wonder what he expected? Writers have a funny habit- they like to know what someone thought of their writing. And for a man who wrote a novel about a boy (long before he had a son), and for that to be read by his son a decade later- the comments I could have given must have been the most important one ever! And I have yet to give mine! And I will, when I have read the novel again.
But life has already mirrored fiction, and I am aware – that I have been the boy who has been running away.. from so many things – family, friends, culture, native land, and even religion! As I now live through (astrology says so) my mid-life years (crisis of all sorts), and burn my self out with my own creative fires- night after night, trying to finish so much of my own writing (fiction & non-fiction), I look back at my father’s children’s novel `Odipponavan’ and am startled. Startled by the agonies of friendships & loyalties of the boy in the book that at times reflect in my own life. I have no doubt reflected my father’s own inner turmoils are in there somewhere too, for no Writers write without putting their own heart in their works!
Perhaps now, I do begin to understand my late father Navasothy..and his life as an Author, Artist, Public Speaker, Radio Personality and all around Cultural Servant to Tamil. Like him, I seem to be living that kind of life..
I shall write more about his other works, in due course..
——————A word on my 100th blog—————–
For almost a week or so, I waited and wondered…about the 100th post. What type of blog entry can take such a special mile stone? And then it struck me – it will be about my father, the late K.Navasothy. More specifically it is about his works.. the books he had written and magazines he had published.
Well, it is easier to make a decision, but harder to follow it through – (as you can see from my 99th post `Broken Vows to my father’). In this case, the difficulty was in tracking own the actual books – as we have a rare copy or so, and even then some are just photocopies.. originals are somewhere in Sri Lanka, or lost for ever! Then came the difficulty of working out publication details and translating the Tamil into English – a task I could have without thought 20 years ago, but now requires remembering and even checking Tamil-English Dictionary (for exact grammatical meaning etc). Now that I have begun, I hope the path will aid me, as I walk upon it.
other related posts (on my father, my arty & writing)
Cover for my first Children’s book
2 thoughts on “Odipponavan- Tamil Novel for Children by K.Navasothy.M.A”
CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! WOW 100TH Blog entry ! What a land mark! very proud naturally 🙂
Btw, great find with this cover of our father’s one of creative creations. Here’s a tribute to him on the Noolaham – Tamil magazine archive .(20th page of this PDF) where Dr Ratnam Niththyanantham remembers our Appa.. Ironically this edition came out just after he got back from taking part as always in the 7th International Conference of Tamil Studies in Maritius -just 28 days prior to his accident -where he presented some of his Phd study findings ! http://www.noolaham.net/project/34/3330/3330.pdf .. I know many from that conference would still remember him as the most articulate , animated and aspiring speakers of his time ! He was a man not afraid of any size audience, and commanding his presence ! No wonder I made it to the UK & Ireland’s International Toastmaster contest having won , representing the South East of the England in 2010! His power of his vocal authority is strong in our blood too 🙂 xxx
You can find 3 Research listings of this Professor (Kanapathipillai Navasothy ) of Tamil Studies among the 4th International Conference of Tamil Studies, took place in Jaffna , Sri Lanka back in the 1974 here : http://tamilnation.co/conferences/cnfJA74/index.htm . Our father took great interest in Immigrant Indians who came to settle in Ceylon, in their mountainous regions -where their Tamil language, cultural ways, passed down poems proved a fascination to him to research. He was avid fan of spotting the sounds, dialect of Tamil as it evolved with various unique customs that also changed over time. Navalar Navasothy, also took interest in the customs and differences among the Tamil Indians and Ceylon Tamils. No scholar or researcher had ever explored such pioneering work examining the art, language , customs married with the people’s humble ways of evolution to this point . with wishes ~ Vathani Navasothy