Poems of Aduri Satyavathi Devi
When I am Half-asleep
Telugu Original: Aduri Satyavathi Devi
English Translation: RS Sudarshanam
Like an iron in the furnace
Thought keeps burning.
Things around working like bellows
Keep the scene aflame.
In an expectant mood of faith
Await the burning sun.
Failing to release the truth,
Word gets stuck at the pen’s writing point.
And impotence of experience
Roars alone like
A raging lion freshly caged.
The activity of common people runs amok
Through cobwebs of outdated custom and snobbery
Reverting back into caves of age-old beliefs.
Cleverness like a fly on an itching wound
Porno and violence like coloured bats
Beat the drums of death and parade
While woman has to cover her eyes like Gandhari.
This scene is like a missile misdirected
Swirls around and overwhelms me.
Thought keeps burning
Like the iron in the furnace.
Telugu Original : ‘Sagam Nidralo Nenunnappudu’
Aduri Satyavathi Devi was born in Guntur in the year 1948 and settled in Visakhapatnam after marriage in 1969. She began her literary career as a lyricist at the age of 13. She wrote a variety of lyrics numbering about 300 — light, classical, devotional, patriotic, children’s and others. More than 50 songs of Satyavati Devi were broadcast over All India Radio. Eventually she made forays into various other literary genres like Poetry, Short story, Essay, Radio Play, Musical Feature, Books, Film reviews, Forewords etc..She created a substantial corpus of poetry with more than 180 poems included in 4 anthologies of poetry. She received accolades from readers, scholars, critics and litterateurs for her sensitive rendering of poems. She participated in many Poetry Meets, Festivals conducted by All India Radio, Doordarshan and the Sahitya Akademi. She was widely translated into English and Hindi. Some of the translations appeared in renowned journals like Indian Literature (English), and Samakaaleen Bharateeya Saahitya (Hindi).
She published her first volume of lyrics Vennello Venugaanam in 1988. Her first volume of poetry Rekkamudavani Raagam was published in 1992 followed by Jalapaata Geetam in 1997 and Veyirangula Velugu Raagam in 2006. Hindi translation of Rekkamudavani Raagam came out in 2008 as “Pankh an Modnevaalaa Raag” and a miscellany of various facets of her literary endeavour Vennela Paarijaataalu was published posthumously in Dec 2008. She received many prizes and awards for her literary pursuits and accomplishments like STVD Kalasamithi Award for Rekkamudavani Raagam in 1993, and Telugu University’s “Pratibha Puraskaram” as “Best Poet” in 1994, “Krishna Sastry Award” from Andhra Lalita Kala Samithi (Secunderabad) in 1998, UNESCO Literary Award in 2000, and “Ramavruksha Benipuri Janma Sataabdi Sammaan” from Jaimuni Academy (Panipat) in 2002. An English translation of her poem, “Veyirekkala Pavuram” (Myriad Winged Bird) has been included in the syllabus of English texts in the poetry section of Degree year students by the Common Core syllabus Committee in AP from 2008.