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« on: Dec 25, 2007 04:36 AM »


 salaam

InshaAllah this thread will contain poems and photos of Andalusia.

Some are from Poems of Arab Andalusia, others from the net and various places. Here is a nice historical article to understand some background: http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/200407/the.other.1492-.compilation..htm

They are soooooooo beautiful faint


=================================================


ABSENCE

Every night I scan
the heavens with my eyes
seeking the star
that you are contemplating.

I question travellers
from the four corners of the earth
hoping to meet one
who has breathed your fragrance.

When the wind blows
I make sure it blows in my face:
the breeze might bring me
news of you.

I wander over roads
without aim, without purpose.
Perhaps a song
will sound your name.

Secretly I study
every face I see
Hoping against hope
to glimpse a trace of your beauty.


Abu Bakr al-Turtushi
(1059-1126) (Eastern Andalusia)
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« Reply #1 on: Dec 26, 2007 07:51 AM »

FAREWELL

(Regarding the Muslims being expelled from Spain after the fall of Granada...)

on the morning they left
we said goodbye
filled with sadness
for the absence to come.

inside the palanquins
on the camel's backs
I saw their faces beautiful as moons
behind veils of golden cloth.

beneath the veils
tears crept like scorpions
over the fragrant roses
of their cheeks.

these scorpions do not harm
the cheek they mark
they save their sting
for the heart of the sorrowful lover.

   (Ibn Jakh)
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« Reply #2 on: Jan 08, 2008 12:41 AM »

One of the most beautiful poems I've ever read.


Code:
WRITTEN FROM AL-ZAHRA'*

From al-Zahra'
I remember you with passion.
The horizon is clear,
the earth's face serene.


The breeze grows faint
with the coming of dawn.
It seems to pity me
and lingers, full of tenderness.


The meandering waterway
with its silvery waters
shows a sparkling smile.
It resembles a necklace
unclasped and thrown aside.


A day like those delicious ones
now gone by
when seizing the dream of destiny
we were thieves of pleasure.


Today, alone,
I distract myself with flowers
that attract my eyes like magnets.
The wind roughhouses with them
bending them over.


The blossoms are eyes.
They see my sleeplessness
and weep for me;
their iridescent tears overflow
staining the calyx.


In the bright sun
red buds light up the rose bushes
making the morning
brighter still.


Fragrant breaths come from the pome
of the waterlilies,
sleepyheads with eyes
half-opened by dawn.


Everything stirs up the memory of my passion for you
still intact in my chest
although my chest might seem
too narrow to contain it.


If, as I so desire,
we two could again be made one,
that day would be the noblest
of all days.


Would God grant calm to my heart
if it could cease to remember you
and refrain from flying
to your side
on wings trembling with desire?


If this passing breeze
would consent to carry me along,
it would put down at your feet
a man worn out by grief.


Oh, my most precious jewel,
the most sublime,
the one preferred by my soul,
as if lovers dealt in jewels!


In times gone by
we demanded of each other
payments of pure love
and were happy as colts
running free in a pasture.


But now I am the only one
who can boast of being loyal.
You left me
and I stay here,
still sad, still loving you.


Ibn Zaydun


*al-Zahra', referring to Madinat al-Zahra', the palace complex outside Cordoba. (The ruins are still extant.) The gardens are said to have been more splendid and extensive than the Generalife in Granada.


Some pictures of it today to get an idea of what it once must have been:

http://www.andalucia.com/magazine/english/ed4/madinat.htm

http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/197605/the.city.of.al-zahra.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medina_Azahara






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« Reply #3 on: Jan 08, 2008 04:30 PM »

One of the most beautiful poems I've ever read.


WRITTEN FROM AL-ZAHRA'*



Wow Lovely!
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« Reply #4 on: Feb 29, 2008 08:54 AM »

Code:

Everything declines after reaching perfection,
therefore let no man be beguiled by the sweetness of a pleasant life.
As you have observed,
these are the decrees that are inconstant:
he whom a single moment has made happy,
has been harmed by many other moments;
And this is the abode that will show pity for no man,
nor will any condition remain in its state for it.
Fate irrevocably destroys every ample coat of mail
when Mashrifi swords and spears glance off without effect;

Where are the crowned kings of Yemen
and where are their jewel-studded diadems and crowns?
Where are [the buildings] Shaddad raised in Iram
and where [the empire] the Sassanians ruled in Persia?
Where is the gold Qarun once possessed;
where are ‘Ad and Shaddad and Qab’an?

An irrevocable decree overcame them all so that they passed away
and the people came to be as though they had never existed.
The kingdoms and kings that had been
came to be like what a sleeper has told about [his] dream vision.

Fate turned against Darius as well as his slayer,
and as for Chosroes, no vaulted palace offered him protection.
It is as if no cause had ever made the hard easy to bear,
and as if Solomon had never ruled the world.
The misfortunes brought on by Fate are of many different kinds,
while Time has causes of joy and of sorrow.
For the accidents [of fortune] there is a consolation that makes them easy to bear,
yet there is no consolation for what has befallen Islam.
An event which cannot be endured has overtaken the peninsula; …
The evil eye has struck [the peninsula] in its Islam so that [the land] decreased
until whole regions and districts were despoiled of [the faith]

Therefore ask Valencia what is the state of Murcia;
and where is Jativa, and where is Jaen?
Where is Cordoba, the home of the sciences,
and many a scholar whose rank was once lofty in it?
Where is Seville and the pleasures it contains,
as well as its sweet river overflowing and brimming full?

[They are] capitals which were the pillars of the land,
yet when the pillars are gone, it may no longer endure!
The tap of the white ablution fount weeps in despair,
like a passionate lover weeping at the departure of the beloved,

Over dwellings emptied of Islam that were first vacated
and are now inhabited by unbelief;
In which the mosques have become churches
wherein only bells and crosses may be found.
Even the mihrabs weep though they are solid;
even the pulpits mourn though they are wooden!

O you who remain heedless though you have a warning in Fate:
if you are asleep, Fate is always awake!
And you who walk forth cheerfully while your homeland diverts you [from cares],
can a homeland beguile any man after [the loss of] Seville?
This misfortune has caused those that preceded it to be forgotten,
nor can it ever be forgotten for the length of all time!

O you who ride lean, thoroughbred steeds which seem like eagles in the racecourse;
And you who carry slender, Indian blades
which seem like fires in the darkness caused by the dust cloud [of war],
And you who are living in luxury beyond the sea enjoying life,
you who have strength and power in your homelands,
Have you no news of the people of Andalus,
for riders have carried forth what men have said [about them]?
How often have the weak,
who were being killed and captured while no man stirred, asked our help?
What means this severing of the bonds of Islam on your behalf,
when you, O worshipers of God, are [our] brethren?
Are there no heroic souls with lofty ambitions;
are there no helpers and defenders of righteousness?

O, who will redress the humiliation of a people who were once powerful,
a people whose condition injustice and tyrants have changed?
Yesterday they were kings in their own homes,
but today they are slaves in the land of the infidel!
Thus, were you to see them perplexed,
with no one to guide them,
wearing the cloth of shame in its different shades,
And were you to behold their weeping when they are sold,
the matter would strike fear into your heart,
and sorrow would seize you.

Alas, many a mother and child have been parted
as souls and bodies are separated!
And many a maiden fair as the sun when it rises,
as though she were rubies and pearls,
Is led off to abomination by a barbarian against her will,
while her eye is in tears and her heart is stunned.
The heart melts with sorrow at such [sights],
if there is any Islam or belief in that heart!

Abu al-Baqa Al-Rundi (fl. 1248 CE)
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« Reply #5 on: Feb 29, 2008 08:58 AM »

BLUE RIVER

The river of diaphanous waters
murmuring between its banks
would have you believe
it is a stream of pearls.

At midday tall trees
cover it with shadows
turning it the color of metal.

So now you see it, blue,
wrapped in brocade,
like a warrior in armor
resting in the shade of his banner.


--Muhammad ibn Ghalib al-Rusafi



Poema de: Muhammad Ben Galib Al-Rusafi, de la Ruzafa de Valência (m.1177)

Here it is in Spanish:

El Río Azul

El río, de murmuradoras riberas, te haría creer
diáfano, que es una corriente de perlas.

A mediodía le cubren de sombra los grandes árboles,
dando un color de herrumbe a la superficie del agua.

Y así lo ves, azul, envuelto en su túnica de brocado,
como un guerrero con loriga tendido a la sombra de su bandera.

Emilio García Gómez- POEMAS ARABIGOANDALUCES, Madrid, Espasa-Calpe
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« Reply #6 on: Feb 29, 2008 09:05 AM »

THE BELOVED


Whoever looks into her eyes
is captured
as wine drinks the reason
of those that drink it.


Everyone fears her glance
except her.
Does the sword tremble
before the heart it pierces?


Weeping, I lifted my eyes
to her face;
the clouds were dispersed
by the sun of her forehead.


Remembering her waist
I tremble with love
like the doves
crying on the branches.


Her absence has left
black sadness in my chest
like the darkness that comes
when the sun goes.


--Umar ibn Umar
(d. 1207) (Qadi of Cordoba and Sevilla)
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« Reply #7 on: Feb 29, 2008 09:11 AM »

A palm tree stands in the middle of Rusafa,
Born in the West, far from the land of palms.
I said to it: How like me you are, far away and in exile,
In long separation from family and friends.
You have sprung from soil in which you are a stranger,
And I, like you, am far from home.

--Abd al-Rahman, Emir of Cordoba, d. 788 CE

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« Reply #8 on: Feb 29, 2008 09:12 AM »

LILIES


The hands of spring
have built crenellated castles
atop the lily stalks:

silver parapets
where knights defend the prince
with golden swords.


--Ibn Darraj al-Qastalli
(958-1030) (Cordoba)



Same poem, diff trans:

The hands of spring have built strong lily castles on their stems,
Castles with battlements of silver where the defenders,
grouped around the prince, hold swords of gold.

--Ibn Darraj (Caceta, 958-1030 CE)


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« Reply #9 on: Feb 29, 2008 09:13 AM »

Look at the sun on the horizon; it is like a bird
casting its wing over the surface of the bay.

--Ali ibn Musa ibn Sa’id (Alcala la Real, 1213-1286 CE)
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« Reply #10 on: Feb 29, 2008 09:20 AM »

If white is the color of mourning in Andalusia,
that is only just.
Don’t you see that I have put on the white of old age
out of mourning for my youth?

--al-Kafif al-Husri (Kairouan, d. 1095 CE)
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« Reply #11 on: Feb 29, 2008 09:21 AM »

Oh, the beauty of the fountain, pelting the
horizon with shooting stars, leaping and jumping around
playfully;
Bubbles of water burst out of it, gushing into
its basin like a frightened snake,
As if it used to move back and forth beneath the
earth, but when it had the chance, it quickly escaped,
And settled into the basin, happy with its new
home, and in amazement kept smiling, showing its bubbles.
And the branches hover overhead, about to kiss
it as it smiles, revealing the whiteness of its teeth.

--Ibn al-Ra’iah (Seville, 13th century CE)


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« Reply #12 on: Feb 29, 2008 09:22 AM »

Wedding Feast on the Horizon
Pass round your cups for there’s a wedding feast on the horizon—
although it would be enough for us just to feast our eyes on your beauty.
The lightning is a henna-dyed hand, the rain, pearls
and like a bride, the horizon is led forth to her husband—
and the eyes of the dawn are lined with kohl.

--Ali ibn Musa ibn Sa’id (Alcala la Real, 1213-1286 CE)
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« Reply #13 on: Feb 29, 2008 09:24 AM »

Granada

Code:

Come, spend a night in the country with me,
my friend (you whom the stars above would gladly call their friend),
for winter's finally over. Listen
to the chatter of the doves and swallows!
We'll lounge beneath the pomegranates, palm trees, apple trees,
under every lovely, leafy thing,
and walk among the vines,
enjoy the splendid faces we will see,
in a lofty palace built of noble stones.


Resting solidly on thick foundations,
its walls like towers fortified,
set upon a flat place, plains all around it
splendid to look at from within its courts.
Chambers constructed, adorned with carvings,
open-work and closed-work,
paving of alabaster, paving of marble,
gates so many that I can't even count them!
Chamber doors paneled with ivory like palace doors,
reddened with panels of cedar, like the Temple.
Wide windows over them,
and within those windows, the sun and moon and stars!


It has a dome, too, like Solomon's palanquin,
suspended like a jewel-room,
turning, changing,
pearl-colored; crystal and marble
in day-time; but in the evening seeming
just like the night sky, all set with stars.
It cheers the heart of the poor and the weary;
perishing, bitter men forget their want.
I saw it once and I forgot my troubles,
my heart took comfort from distress,
my body seemed to fly for joy,
as if on wings of eagles.


There was a basin brimming, like Solomon's basin,
but not on the backs of bulls like his –
lions stood around its edge
with wells in their innards, and mouths gushing water;
they made you think of whelps that roar for prey;
for they had wells inside them, wells that emitted
water in streams through their mouths like rivers.


Then there were canals with does planted by them,
does that were hollow, pouring water,
sprinkling the plants planted in the garden-beds,
casting pure water upon them,
watering the myrtle-garden,
treetops fresh and sprinkling,
and everything was fragrant as spices,
everything as if it were perfumed with myrrh.
Birds were singing in the boughs,
peering through the palm-fronds,
and there were fresh and lovely blossoms –
rose, narcissus, saffron –
each one boasting that he was the best,
(though we thought every one was beautiful).
The narcissuses said, “We are so white
we rule the sun and moon and stars!”
The doves complained at such talk and said,
“No, we are the princesses here! Just see our neck-rings,
with which we charm the hearts of men,
dearer far than pearls.”
The bucks rose up against the girls
and darkened their splendor with their own,
boasting that they were the best of all,
because they are like young rams.
But when the sun rose over them,
I cried out, “Halt! Do not cross the boundaries!”


(from Ibn Gabirol, ca. 1021- 1058 CE,
“The Palace and the Garden,”)
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« Reply #14 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:52 AM »

Nothing disturbed me more than a dove,
singing on a branch between the island and the river.
Its collar was the color of pistachio nuts,
its breasts of lapis lazuli, its neck brightly embroidered,
its tail and leading wing feathers of dark green.
A ring of gold surrounded its pearl eyelids,
pearls which rolled over rubies.
Black was the tip of its sharp beak, as if it
were a silver penpoint dipped in ink.
It pillowed itself on a couch of an Ark tree
and bowed with its wings folded over its breast.
But when it saw my tears, it was troubled by my
weeping and standing straight up on the green bough.
It spread out its wings and flapped them,
flying off with my heart to wherever it flew. Where?
I don’t know.

--Ali ibn Hisa (Seville, d. 1050 CE)


I also found this poem with a different translation but it said the author was Abul Hasan (11th c.) so maybe a nickname?

trans. A.J. Arberry

The Dove

Naught disturbed my tranquil mood
Save a dove, that softly cooed
On his lonely branch, supreme
Over island, over stream.

Collar of pistachio
Throat embroidered silk aglow,
Turquoise-blue his bosom's sash
Back and wing-tips all of ash.

Pearly lashes necklace wise
Ringed the rubies of his eyes,
And his brow was chapleted
With a slender golden thread.

Sword-sharp was his beak, and white,
But its tip was jet as night,
Like a pen of silver dipped
Into ink, and sable tipped.

Cushioned on his twig alone
Like a monarch on a throne,
Neck inclined, and burrowing
In his soft and folded wing.

When he saw my tears aflow
(And my weeping moved him so)
Startled, he ascended now
To the topmost leafy bough.

There his outspread wings he shook,
Clapping fathers as he took
With my heart the air, to go
Whither? Ah, I do not know.
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« Reply #15 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:53 AM »

O king, whose fathers were of lofty mien and most noble lineage!
You have always adorned my neck with marvelous
gifts; so may you now adorn my hand with a falcon.
Bestow on me one with fine wings, as if its
leading feathers had been arched by the north wind.
Proudly I shall take him out in the morning,
making the wind veer in my hand, and I shall capture
the free with my chained one.

--Abu Bakr Ibn al-Qabturnuh (Badajoz, c. 1126 CE
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« Reply #16 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:54 AM »

Bright as a meteor, he came prancing forth in a gilded saddle cloth.
Someone said, envying me, as he saw him trotting beneath me into battle:
“Who has bridled the morning with the Pleiades
and saddled the lightning with the crescent moon?”

--Abu al-Sall (Denia, 1067-1134 CE)


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« Reply #17 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:55 AM »

Code:
A little shaikh from the land of Meknes sings in the middle of the marketplaces:
“What have I to do with men, and what have men to do with me?”
What, O friend, have I to do with any creature
[When] He whom I love is a Creator, a Provider?
Unless you are sincere, my son, say not a word.
Take down my words on paper and write them like an amulet on my authority.
What have I to do with men, and what have men to do with me?"

Here is a clear statement that needs no explanation:
What has anyone to do with anyone? Grasp this allusion well,
And observe my old age, my staff, and my begging wallet.
Thus did I live in Fez and thus do I live here too.
“What have I to do with men, and what have men to do with me?"

How beautiful are his words when he struts through the market-places
And you see the shopkeepers turn their necks in his direction.
With his begging wallet hanging from his neck, a short staff and cork sandals,
He is a well-built little shaikh, built as God created him.
"What have I to do with men, and what have men to do with me?"

Were you to see this little shaikh, how elegant he is in the true sense of the word!
He turned to me and said to me: "Do I see you follow me?
I set down my begging bowl-and may He who has mercy on us have mercy on it."
And he placed it among different kinds [of people] saying: "Leave me alone, leave me
alone.
What have I to do with men, and what have men to do with me?
He who does good, O my son, receives only good in return;
He will look to his faults and reprove his own deeds,
While he who is close to my state will remain innocent and free."
He whose soul is good will grasp the innocence of the singer;
"What have I to do with men, and what have men to do with me?"

And in this way he busies himself in blessing Muhammad,
And [requesting God's] pleasure for his minister the glorious Abu Bakr,
And for the truthful ‘Umar and for the martyr of every place of martyrdom,
And for ‘Ali the grand judge over iniquities who, when he struck out, did not repeat the
blow.

--Shushtari (1212–1269 CE)
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« Reply #18 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:56 AM »

Drink from the lily pond, red with flowers, and also green,
As if the flowers were tongues of fire coming out of the water.

--Ibn Hamdis (Sicily, 1055-1132 CE)
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« Reply #19 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:56 AM »

How beautiful the rose in its colors of deep red and pure white.
Its whiteness is like the brilliance of the stars;
its redness not different from the red of twilight.
And the yellow in its center is like sesame seeds clustered on a plate.

--Abu al-Abbas al-Ghassani (Tunis, c. 1261 CE)
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« Reply #20 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:57 AM »

The right hand of the wind forges a coat of
mail on the river which ripples with a thousand wrinkles.
And whenever the wind adds a ring, the rain comes
along to fasten it with its rivets.

--Asa al-A’ma (Manish, c. 1131 CE)
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« Reply #21 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:57 AM »

The river is like a piece of parchment
on which the breeze is tracing its lines.
And when they see how beautiful the writing is,
the branches bend down to read it.

--Ali ibn Musa ibn Sa’id (Alcala la Real, 1213-1286 CE)



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« Reply #22 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:57 AM »

How I love those boats as they start to race, like horses chasing one another.
The neck of the river was unadorned before, but now, in the darkness of night, it is all
decked out.
The brightness of the boats’ candles is as the brilliance of stars; you’d think their
reflections were lances in the water.
Many boats are moved along by their sail wings and others by their oar feet; they look
like frightened rabbits fleeing from falcons.

--Ibn Lubbal (Jerez, d. 1187 CE)
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« Reply #23 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:58 AM »

When the bird of sleep thought my eye was a nest, he saw
its lashes and, being afraid of nets, he was frightened away.

--Ibn al-Hammarah (c. 1150 CE)
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« Reply #24 on: Mar 02, 2008 10:58 AM »

You have a house where the curtains are perfect for
musical evenings, but let us understand one thing:
The flies do the singing, the mosquitoes accompany them,
and the fleas are the dancers.

--Abu Abdallah ibn Sharaf (Kairouan, d. 1068 CE)
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