Experience the captivating world of Arabic poetry and literature. The Arabic Qahwa podcast is an effort to present the gems of Arabic literature in an accessible manner to English speakers, and students of the Arabic language. Join us as we translate and explain beautiful Arabic poetry, and relate the legends and stories surrounding it. Experience the world of the Arabs as never before.
The Poetry of Amr ibn Kulthum (Commentary)
The Mu'allaqah of the pre-Islamic poet Amr ibn Kulthum is one of the most stunningly beautiful poems in Arabic. In this episode we dive in deep, trying to understand the meanings and brilliance behind these Arabic lines.
Majun Layla – the man who lost his mind for love
"I don’t ascend high mountains, except because of love
And I don’t sing poetry, except as medicine"
Listen to one of the most moving poems in Arabic literature, where Majnun Layla expresses his pain over losing his lover - Layla. And listen to what Layla had to say in reply to him.
The Poems of Imru’al-Qays
Imru' al-Qays, was known as the wandering king, because he spent his life seeking revenge, and the re-establishment of his father's lost kingdom. He is sometimes referred to as the father of Arabic poetry, because he established many of the conventions and themes in Arabic poetry - which the poets after him followed.
However, he wasn't always concerned about power and vengeance. He spent his youth as a 'playboy', chasing women and drinking.
What made him special is his way with words. He puts his experiences, emotions and pain into his mesmerizing poetry.
The Art of Praising Yourself
We take a look through the eyes of Arabic literature at the art of praising oneself. Some poets were shameless when it came to self-promotion. But is this a good idea? Are there lessons to be learned?
In this episode we will go through the poetry of Hatim at-Ta'iyy and Al-Mutanabbi said in Fakhr (self-exaltation)
The War of Basus
Listen to this Bizarre story from the pre-Islamic period where a war was fought for over 40 years between the tribes of Taghlib and Bakr over the killing of a camel. Listen to the stories of Kulayb, Jassas, Zir Salim, al-Harith ibn Ubad and more.
The Mu’allaqat – Hanging Odes – Part 2
An introduction to the Mu'allaqat or the Hanging odes. These are 7 poems that represent the finest of pre-Islamic Arabic poetry. The study of pre-Islamic poetry offers much insight into the language and the depth of its meanings and usages.