Meet Maysoon bint Bahdal: A Simple Country Woman and Grand Poet

The Forgotten Tabi'at (Series)

A simple request

He then called upon Yazid and said “Ask me anything. And I will grant you.”

Yazid then prostrated to Allah in gratitude after which he said “Alhamdulillah that Allah has made you the Amir-ul-Mumineen such that you have the power to grant me whatever I want and Alhamdulillah that you see me as worthy enough to have my request granted. So I ask that I should become the Khalifah after you. And I ask that you make me the leader of the city.

And I ask that you grant me permission to go to Hajj and make me the Amir-ul-Hajj. And I ask that you add ten dinars to the stipends of every single person in Sham and announce that It’s because Yazid asked so. And I want you to increase the giving of the people of Quraish because they are my allies.

Suppport AboutIslam.net

Thaqithah, who was taken aback by the little Yazid’s intelligent requests finally understood why he was the preferred son. In defeat, she said to Mu’awiyah “Okay. Ask him to take care of me after you.”

A return to the best

Luxury overwhelmed her, as though a hollow had been created in her heart whenever she found herself wrapped up in too much luxury. But Mu’awiyah, loved her so much that he provided her with great comfort, unknown to him that his wife didn’t appreciate it.

Mu’awiyah built her a mansion in Al Huta – a garden where birds and fruits and beautiful gardens abound. Being a countrywoman, she was unmoved by this luxury, missing her home in the desert. And then she wrote a poem expressing her feelings.

In each verse, Maysoon affirmed her preference for the simple and raw elements of Bedouin life over the refinements and comforts of urban life. Muʿaawiyah, hearing the poem, felt Maysoon was showing ingratitude for his love and magnanimity.

The infamous poem:

A home with souls occupying it is more beloved to me than a lofty palace.

A young she-camel following a young camel is more beloved to me than a fast mule.

A dog that defends me from strangers is more beloved to me than a docile cat.

Wearing thick rough abaya – and I am content –  is more beloved than the thin silk.

Eating a small piece of dry bread on the floor of my home is more beloved to me than a fancy loaf.

Wind whistling everywhere is more beloved to me than drumbeats.

Thin young generous cousin of mine is more beloved to me than a strong zebra.

Rough living in the Bedouin is more desired to my soul than an innovative life. 

I do not desire a substitute for my home, enough for me noble home.

Maysoon bint Bahdal

Mu’awiyah heard her recite this poetry and became angry and sad. Divorcing her, she then returned to the country life that she was colourfully accustomed to. He asked her to take everything she wanted with her.

Maysoon took Yazid and raised him with her in the bedouin environment. She continued to live in the desert until she was 80 years old. She died in 101 AH

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About Wardah Abbas
Wardah Abbas is a Lawyer who chose to pursue a career in writing. She’s passionate about Islam and has a particular interest in green and wholesome living. When she’s not writing, spending time with her family or bonding with a book, she can be found in the kitchen, whipping up edible ingredients into luscious skincare. Find her blogging at greenmuslimblog.com or visit her website at wardahabbas.com