Tag Archives: Islamic poetry

A Poem of Imam Shafi’i

Not always wealth, not always force, A splendid destiny commands; The lordly vulture gnaws the corse That rots upon yon barren sands. Nor want nor weakness still conspires To bind us to a sordid state; The fly, that with a touch expires, Sips honey from the royal plate. Translated by W. A. Clouston in Arabian Poetry for English Readers. If anyone …

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The Repentance of Abu Nuwas

One of the most famous Arabic language poets in history was a man named Abu Nuwas. In addition to his literary talent, he was particularly know for the rowdy content of his writings. He would praise the joys of getting drunk, describe in vivid detail his desire for women (and men) and all in all, lead an extremely hedonistic life.

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