Get Your Premium Membership

Changampuzha Krishna Pillai Biography | Poet

Photo of Changampuzha Krishna Pillai

Changampuzha Krishna Pilla was a famous Mayalayam poet who wrote many collections of poetry in his too short life. Little is written about the life of this wonderful artist and it seems as if there is a lot of respect that has been given to him by those that knew him as well as adoring fans.

Fame and Failure

Changampuzha Krishna Pillai was born in Kerala, India on October 11, 1911 and died June 17, 1948. He attended elementary school in what is today Kochi City and later went to the university there. At his primary school there was a wonderful teacher that helped him throughout his life. During times of difficulty he would visit this teacher at his home especially when he received negative peer feedback. He later attended the English School where another teacher was introduced into his life. 

He had found a young woman who he had hoped to be his wife, but since he was a poor and struggling artist, her family was not interested in him attempting to become her man.

He worked as a clerk and then later at a printing press but began to experience health issues. During this time he was particularly productive as a writer and his most famous work Ramanan was written in 1936 selling over 100,000 copies. It has been described as a romantic elegy in all references about the author. He attempted to attend law school, but was unable to complete the program because of the lack of financial resources.

Family Life

He experienced a difficult relationship with his father who had been able to offer a good life for his family. He was expected to marry a cousin, but she passed at the early age of 10 years old. When his father died he stated that he felt relieved and freed and had a difficult time acting sad for his relatives. His mother was overly caring for him, as he was the only boy in the family. The young women in his community also were interested in him and considered him handsome and compelling. He later carried the reputation of a womanizer.

In his early twenties he had a sexual encounter with an older woman that he remembered for the entirety of his life. He started to have further family difficulties with his mother who expressed consistent disapproval of his life style and choices and he often avoided her. He had a difficult time with his emotions and mood swings throughout his life.

More About Ramanan

This sentimental work was a play that was written in verse in his primary language of Malayalam and was based on the life of his friend Edappally Raghavan Pillai. This major work, after his death was produced as a movie and his poetry had continued to inspire many young artists and poets alike. Ramanan is still being sold today and is still a best seller. Another important work is his novel Kalithozhi as well as other poetic works such as Udyana lakshmi.


His friend and colleague Edappally Raghavan Pillai worked together on the project of Samastha Kerala Sahitya Parishath which was an intellectual organization that held its first meeting in his home town. He very much wanted to see the success in this project and worked very hard at it.

Fear and Astrology

Although he had a relatively short life he wrote with a fervor and a passion that young men who die too young do. He was married and had three children and sadly passed at 37 from the terrible disease, tuberculosis. He had a strong interest and belief in astrology and feared an early death. He experienced many emotional ups and downs that is often seen as an artistic personality and

In Memory of Pillai

He was well loved by his community and there is a park, a library and a memorial which is also his tomb in his memory. On it is inscribed with his words, "My biggest failure, Is having an honest heart, In this faulty world." This reflects his kind soul and spirit. He wrote many beautiful and romantic works throughout his life. 

Changampuzha Krishna Pillai: Poems | Best Poems | Short Poems | Quotes