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A poet who was inspired by satire and folklore

By K. N. Venkatasubba Rao

BANGALORE Dec. 28. The Kannada poet, K.S. Narasimha Swamy (88), who died here on Sunday, won a number of prestigious awards including that of the Central Sahitya Academy.

Narasimha Swamy was deeply influenced by the English poet, Robert Burns, and a couple of Kannada poets of his time. He adopted satire and folklore for his poetic expressions. His poems, which are generally set in a rural background such as Naviluru and Honnuru, draw images from nature. Some of them have political undertones and show the poet's longing for a new social order where peace and tranquillity will prevail.

The noted filmmaker, T.S. Nagabharana, made a "romantic" film based on Narasimha Swamy's immortal work, Mysooru Mallige. KSN translated Euripides' Medea and Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn into Kannada.

Although he never attempted to identify himself with any particular literary tradition, a section of his literary critics preferred to describe his poetry as "songs", in view of the modern literary sensibilities. Narasimaha Swamy silenced his critics by writing an interestingly interpretative poem, Gadiyaarada Angadi Munde, underlined by fervent metaphors which dealt with the passage of time.

Condolence messages

The Governor, T.N. Chaturvedi, the Minister for High Education and Information, G. Parameshwar, the Minister of State for Kannada and Culture, Rani Satish, and a number of others have mourned the death of KSN.

In a message, Mr. Chaturvedi said Narasimha Swamy's contribution to Kannada literature was memorable. Mr. Parameshwar described Narasimha Swamy as the father of modern romantic poetry in Kannada. Ms. Satish said Narasimha Swamy gave expression to tender feelings.

H.D. Deve Gowda, former Prime Minister, Rajkumar, film artiste, U.R. Ananthamurthy, writer, G.S. Shivarudrappa, poet, and a number of playwrights and film-makers went to Narasimha Swamy's residence and paid tributes.

Our Mysore Staff Correspondent reports:

Speaking in Mysore, the Chief Minister, S.M. Krishna, mourned the death of Narasimhaswamy. He said the poems of Narasimhaswamy touched the heart of the common man, and his death was a loss to the State.

Our Chikmagalur Correspondent reports:

Addressing presspersons in Chikmagalur, the BJP President, H.N. Ananth Kumar, expressed condolences.

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