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Arabian Poetry, by W. A. Clouston, [1881], at

p. 105


[MAISUNA was a daughter of the tribe of Calab; a tribe, according to Abulfeda, remarkable both for the purity of dialect spoken in it and for the number of poets it had produced. She was married, whilst very young, to the Khalif Mowiah; but this exalted situation by no means suited the disposition of Maisuna; and, amidst all the pomp and splendour of Damascus, she languished for the simple pleasures of her native desert.

These feelings gave birth to the following simple stanzas, which she took the greatest delight in singing, whenever she could find an opportunity to indulge her melancholy in private. She was unfortunately overheard one day by Mowiah, who was of course not a little offended, both with the discovery of his wife's sentiments, and with the contemptuous manner in which she had expressed herself with regard to her husband; and, as a punishment for her fault, he ordered her to retire from court. Maisuna immediately obeyed, and, taking her infant son Yezid with her, returned to Yemen; nor did she revisit Damascus till after the death of Mowiah, when Yezid ascended the throne.]

THE russet suit of camel's hair,
  With spirits light and eye serene,
Is dearer to my bosom far
  Than all the trappings of a queen.

The humble tent, and murmuring breeze
  That whistles through its fluttering walls,
My unaspiring fancy please,
  Better than towers and splendid halls.

p. 106

Th’ attendant colts, that bounding fly
  And frolic by the litter's side,
Are dearer in Maisuna's eye
  Than gorgeous mules in all their pride.

The watch-dog's voice, that bays whene’er
  A-stranger seeks his master's cot,
Sounds sweeter in Maisuna's ear
  Than yonder trumpet's long-drawn note.

The rustic youth, unspoiled by art,
  Son of my kindred, poor but free,
Will ever to Maisuna's heart
  Be dearer, pampered fool, than thee!

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