February 03, 2006

The poem of the cloak

Imam Busairi lived in Egypt during the 13th century but travelled and lived across the Arab world in Yemen, Jerusalem, Mecca and finally Medina, where he became paralyzed and one night recited a poem that he dedicated to the Prophet Mohammad* in hopes that God would forgive his sins.

In his dream that night he saw the Prophet Mohammad* lay his cloak on him, and thus the poem was named Qasidatul Burdah, the poem of the cloak.

This is most likely the most famous poem written in Arabic and is read by non Arab Muslims as well and taught to children, often in the form of a song.

Here are excerpts of it:

Wa raawadatho'l jibaalo' shhommo min zahabin
When mountains dressed themselves in gold to tempt him,

3n nafsihi fa'araaha ayyama shamami
he was completely disinclined due to his courage.

wa'akkadat zohdaho fiha darouratoho
His piety increased inspite of his need.

inn'addarourata la ta3dou 3la'l 3isami
For verily need never prevails (overpowers) the infallible.

wa kayfa tad3ou ila' ddonya darourata man
How could necessity attach him to the world?

law laaho lam takhroji donya mina'l 3adami
When the world, had it not been for him, would not have been brought into existence.

Mohammadon* sayyido'l kawnayni wa'thaqalayni
Mohammad*, leader of both the worlds and both creations (man and jinn),

wa'l fareeqayni min 3rabi' wa 3ajami
and of both groups, Arabs and non Arabs.

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Wa kayfa yodriko fi'ddonya 7aqeeqataho
And how can the reality of him be comprehended in this world?

qawmon nayyamon tasallaw 3anho bil7olomi
A sleeping nation whose description of him are like (interpretations of ) a dream.

famablagho'l 3ilmi fihi annaho basharon
So the depth of (our) knowledge concerning him is that he is a man,

wa annaho khayro khalqi'llahi kollihimi
and verily he is the best of all the creations of Allah.

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*May peace and blessings be upon him

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi, I really like your website. I've been searching for this poem fully translated in English but don't know where to find it. Do you have any recommendations?

BuJ said...

nice to see arabic poetry.. but i cannot read it at all in this form, can u not type it in arabic?
mind you.. i never heard of this poet before.. everyday i learn something new :)

kaya said...

Har ek baat parr kehtay ho tum kay tu kya hai...tum hi kaho kay andaazay guftagu kya hai?

Shaykhspeara Sha'ira said...

Anon: I believe Hamza Yusuf translated it to english and if you google it I am sure you will find it available to you on the net.

Kaya: wah wah...Dil e nadaan tujhe hua kya hai, is dard ka dawa kya hai :)

Do we have a Mirza Ghalib fan here? :)

kaya said...

Ham haiN mushtaaq aur woh bezaar
Ya ilaahee ! yeh maajra kya hai ?

BuJ said...

time for another poem me thinks :)

MD said...

Sheer co-incidence. I was listening to Qasida Burda as I was read your entry :)) It truly is beautiful. Thanks for the story behind it, I wasn't aware of it.

MD said...

my grammatical cells have gone awry. i meant *reading

Shaykhspeara Sha'ira said...

It sure is a beautiful poem...it wasn't until I moved to Syria that I became more familiar with it and its history.

Viagra Online said...

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