by Damodara Rao Dasu

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Dasu Sreeramulu (1846-1908)

A versatile poet and writer of more than thirty three books on different subjects, Dasu Sreeramulu was born in Andhrapradesh. Even as a teenager, he wrote 'Satrajiti Vilasamu - yakshaganam', and also performed 'Avadhanams' in both Telugu and Samskrit.

Though a lawyer by profession, he evinced great interest in literature, music, and dance. Eminent Kuchipudi artists of his time, Vempati Kodanda Ramaiah and Tadepalli Vissayya, used to take scholarly advice from Sreeramulu. By 1887, he composed many krutis, padams, and javalis, particularly on Venugopalaswamy of Totla Valluru. Devadasis like Chadalavada Pitchai, Rajaratnam, and Pinapala Bhavani were helped by him with suitable lyrics and compositions. He also founded a famous music school at Eluru. He is the author of 'Abhinaya Darpanam' a good treatise on music and dance.

Sreeramulu's speeches in literary conferences used to be spiced with musical rendering of poems and songs. His magnum opus is 'Sri Devi Bhagawatham' a popular 'parayana grantham' in temples even today. This memoir is only one aspect of his multi-faceted personality.

Mudra (indentity): Dasu Rama


Dasu Sreeramulu Krutis, Padams and Javalis

  • Emani telupudune
  • mooTa laDigitina
  • munjEti kankaNa
  • neetoTi mAtalu
  • ramaNi rO samukhAna
  • valachitirA
  • vanitarO
  • vAri vAri jOli
  • mAyamma mahishAsura
  • paramESwara
  • rAmA nee mahima
  • nee sari daivamu
  • radhikA manOhara
  • rAma neeku nAmeeda
  • nAdAnanda rasa
  • maguva nEnenta
  • anta geervANamu
  • vaTTU beTTeda
  • manasudeerenA
  • nEnunee dAna
  • kAmAndhakaramu
  • muddu mudduga
  • tattara paDanEla
  • nanu viDanADuTa
  • daya lEka
  • iddari pondElarA
  • inta mOhamA
  • nEnerugan nee jADa
  • kaTTivaiturA
  • mukku pachchalArani
  • nA sAmi
  • aDivi mushNi kAya
  • nE gAnanA sAmi
  • bhAmini rAgadE
  • nilu nilu maTunDU mee
  • vaddu vaddurA
  • manasichchi nAtO
  • kOpamA sAmi yEmira
  • vaga kADa
  • sari sari
  • mATADi pommanavE
  • iTu rArA
  • mAnavati
  • EmanenE kOmali
  • teliyadE
  • tagu tagulErA
  • nA nosaTanE
  • pATa bADeda
  • Emani telupu dune - farazu - chApu - jAvaLi

    P Emani telpudu nE kOmali nA bhAgya
    mEmani telpudunE nA muddu sAmiki
    nA meeda prEma ||
    Oh my delicate lady, is it possible to describe how fortunate I am to win the love of my lovely lord Venugopala?
    C chekkili muddADenE chakkani nA sAmi
    chekkili muddADenE
    nikkamuga ninna rEyi - prakka nE pavvaLinchi
    chakkani kemmOvi nokkenE ||
    Last night my beautiful lord Venugopala fondled me, Kissed on my cheeks and lips, sleeping by my side.
    C baLi chE nannElenE kELilO na sAmi
    bALi chE nannElenE
    vELa gadE rArammani viluva gala sommu lichchi
    chAlagA lAlinchenE sOlenE bAlanE ||
    My lord sported with me in love. He coaxed me with precious ornaments. I am young, I fainted in his arms.
    C nA sATi pEranenE vENu gOpAluDu
    nA sATi pEranenE
    Asa deerchi rAma dAsa kavi chitta
    vAsu DAye poosenE gandhamu chEsenE bAsanE ||
    Venugopala extoled me as unrivaled. He remains in poet Ramadasa's mind forever. He smeared sandalwood paste on me and swore to be mine.

    mooTa laDigitinA - yadukula kAmbhOji - tripuTa - padamu

    P mooTa laDigitinA mulle laDigitinA
    mooti trippedavEmirA muddiDarA mOmu tippeda vEmi rA ||
    Did I ask you bundles of money or packets of goods? Why do you turn your face aside? Why don't you kiss me?
    AP nOTi mATa kai na nOchukOnaitinA
    kooTa mulA muddu kOmali pAlaina ||
    Am I not fortunate even to chat with you? That lady is lucky in enjoying time with you.
    C tyAga SeeluDaveevu dAchina sommanta vEga nA kimmanTinA
    bhAgA livva naina paniki rAnaitinA
    bAgAye nadi yenta bangAru bommaina ||
    Did I ask for the money you hoarded? You treated her as an idol of gold. Am I not good for you?
    C vaDiga nee pAnpu vaddaku chEraga vaddu vaddana nElarA
    aDugu lottaga naina anukoola paDa rAdA
    paDati bOdhana liha para sAdhanmulaina ||
    When I reached your bed so soon, Why do you reject me? Am I not even fit for comforting your legs? You accepted that lady's preaching as steps for your bliss in this and the other world too.
    C pAlinchu Sree tOTla valluri vENu gopAlA mrokkiti mrokkiti Sree la minchina dAsu Sree rAMa kavi kruti
    vALAyamuga ninnu varNana jEsina ||
    I bow to you, Oh Venugopala, protect me. Poet Dasu Sree Rama's song of your praise is above all riches.

    munjEti kankaNa- sAvEri - roopakam - padamu

    P munjEti kankaNNammuna kaddamEla nE
    ranjillu vAni guNamu ramaNi mana meragamE ||
    Why do you keep a mirror to see a bracelet on your hand? Oh charming lady, don't we know his flattering words?
    C kammadanapu mATa lane kaDupulO noka vidhame
    komma vAni valapu nikkamu gAde namma rAde ||
    His talk is sweet, but he is different at heart. Oh my young lady, his love is not real, do not believe him.
    C mATalunu chEtalunu mana vaddane cheliya
    mATiki paDAkalA maguva tODa tagava dEla ||
    His talk and actions are with us, but he spends the night with the other woman.
    C bhAsurAngi nannu mAya jEse nEnEmi sEtu
    dAsu rAma kavi manO nivAsuDAye mOsamAye ||
    Oh my wise lady, he cheated me. What shall I do? I am at loss. He dwells in the heart of Dasu Rama.

    neetOTi mATalu - kApi - Adi - jAvaLi

    P neetOTi mATalu nAkElarA sAmi
    nA tOTi mATalu neekElarA ||
    Why do I bother to talk to you, oh Lord? Why should you talk to me?
    AP nEtALa dAni tO khAtAlu neekEla
    preeti gala nAti yani pOtivi rAtiri ||
    Why should you regularly visit the woman whom I cannot tolerate? That woman is dear to you, so you visited her last night.
    C paruvaTarA nAtO panulEmi rA sAmi
    paruvaTarA nAtO panulEmi rA
    vira jAji bantulu visaraku rA sAmi
    sarasamu virasamau chAlura chAlura ||
    What a shame, my Lord, do you care for me? Don't throw jasmine garlands on me. All fun becomes discord. Enough is enough.
    C oyyAra midi yEmi oorukOrA sAmi
    oyyara midi yEmi oorukoRa
    uyyala manchamu noochakurA sAmi
    ayyadi gayyALi ayya yO ayya yO ||
    Why is this cajoling. Stop it, stop it. Don't swing me, my lord. That woman is termagant, alas.
    C vEsamA valloori vENu gOpAlA sAmi
    vEsamA valloori vENu gOpAlA
    dAsu Sree rAmuni bhAsura vAkyamu
    chEserA vEyi vElu sEbhAsu sEbhAsu ||
    Why this drama? Oh Venugopala. Dasu Sreerama's statement is invaluable. Well done, well done.

    ramaNi rO samukhAna - kAnaDa - jAvaLi

    P ramaNi rO samukhAna - rAya bAra mETikE
    nimisha maina tAlAlEne. nEne vAni rammandunE ||
    Oh my charming lady, when I am in front of him, why does he talk through some mediator? I cant wait even for a minute. I myself will request him to come.
    C kaDu vEDuka vAni mEna - gandhamunu boosi Aku
    maDupu lichchi taDa vETiki - mApaTiki rammandune ||
    I will smear sandalwood cream on his body, offer him tamboolam (betel leaves) and request him to come in the night.
    C kOri vAni jEri panneeru jalli nannu
    vEru sEyaga rAdu vE vEga rammandune ||
    I will meet him in all love, I will sprinkle perfume and request him to come soon to be with me.
    C bhoosurAngi vENu gOpAla inta panta mEla
    dAsu rAma kavi sannuti jEse nika rammandune ||
    Oh my wise lady, why is Venugopala so stubborn? I will request him to come soon.
    Dasu Rama surely worships him.

    valachiti rA - darbAru - chApu - padamu

    P valachiti rA ninu vadalanu sAmi
    jala jAksha nee darSanamE padi vElu ||
    Oh lord Gopala, I loved you, I'll not leave you.
    Oh lotus eyed lord, your presence is invaluable.
    C ichchina sarE ivvakunna sarE
    vachchinAtO noka muchchaTADina chAlu ||
    Whether you give me anything or not,
    I will be content with just your fond talk.
    C neeLLa nE munchu pAla nE munchu
    kALLaku mrokkeda karuNincharA sAmi ||
    Whether you save me or sink me,
    I will only bow to your feet. Please be merciful.
    C vENu gOpAlA vEDiti chAlA
    rANinchu dAsu Sree rAmu nullamu vale ||
    Oh Venugopala, I have been imploring you too long. You flourish well in Dasu Sree Rama's heart.

    vanita rO ee vannelEla nE - Ananda bhairavi - roopakam - jAvaLi

    P vanita rO ee vanne lEla nE ee vELa nAku
    tanuvEla taruNulEla dhanamEla dhAmamEla ||
    Oh young woman, what good is this beauty for me?
    What for is this body, youth and abode?
    C AkulEla pOkalEla anna mEla pAnamlEla
    Sree karunDu rAka yunDi ASaluDigi yunna vELa ||
    Why tamboolam (betel leaves & nuts), why food and drink
    when I lost all hopes of my dear lord returning?
    C sogasEla sommulEla agarEla gandha mEla
    maganiki daya lEka mEnu sagamai yunnaTTi vELa ||
    Why these ornaments, why this beauty why this perfume, why this sandalwood paste?
    When my lord is so merciless, my body is reduced to half.
    C bhAsurAngi tOTa lEla pATa lEla Ata lEla
    dAsu rAma pAlu bAsi AsaluDigi yunna vELa ||
    Oh my wise lady, why these gardens for me? Why this song and dance?
    When the lord of Dasu Rama,VenuGopala left me alone, when all my hopes are shattered.

    vAri veeri jOli - dwijAvanti - miSra chApu - padamu

    P vAri veeri jOli nA kEla rA sAmi
    vaddu vaddu chAlurA ||
    Why should I bother about others affairs?
    No, no, it is enough.
    AP nOru moosu koni yoora kunna gAni
    teera dAye dAni pOru nE nEmi sEtu ||
    Though I keep my mouth shut, trouble from her never stops.
    What shall I do?
    C ala dAnitO neevu kalasi kuluku chunna
    nade nAku padi vElu rA
    valapu nApai neeku kaluga kunna nEmi
    toli nOmu phalamani talachiti nE kAni ||
    I did not grudge though you were flirting with her.
    I only cursed my fate, though you did not show me love.
    C vala vala kanneeru varada lai pAragA
    tala vrAse gA daivamu
    nilachi neetO ninka paluku lEmiTikirA
    alaru tEniya visa maina grOleda gAni ||
    It is my fate to shed tears incessantly.
    What is the use of talking to you any more?
    I prefer to consume poison like honey.
    C vAraka Sree tOTla valluri vEnu gOpAla
    mrokkeda mrokkeda
    dheeru Daina dAsu Sree rAma kavi kruti
    sAra maina vini sAmi nannE larA ||
    I bow to you always, Oh Gopala.
    You listen to the essence of the learned Dasu Sreerama's song.
    Protect me, oh Lord Venu Gopala.