Abd al Wahhab Al-Bayati

(1926–1999 / Baghdad)

Abd al Wahhab Al-Bayati
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He was born in Baghdad, near the shrine of the 12th century Sufi Abdel Qadir al-Jilani. In this respect, al-Bayati is unique among his peers, most of whom share pastoral roots. A man of the city, he lived close to the political heartbeat most of his life—one of his friends, Ahmed Abdel-Moeti Hegazi, said urban centers of "hotels and institutions, cafés and airports" were actually his temporary residences.[2] London, Moscow, Madrid and Baghdad are all represented in his poetry. He attended Baghdad University, and became a teacher after graduating from Dar Al-Mu'allimin (the Teacher's College) in 1950, the same year that he released his first collection of poems, Mala'ika wa Shayatin... more »

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Best Poem of Abd al Wahhab Al-Bayati

Secret Of Fire

On the last day
I kissed her hands,
Her eyes / her lips.
I said to her: you are now
Ripe like an apple
Half of you: a woman
The other half: impossible to describe.
The words
Escaped me
And I escaped them
Both of us collapsed.
Now I pray
For the childhood of this light face
And for this ripe, burning body
I bring my face closer
To this gushing spring,
Thirsty.
On the last day, I said to her:
You are the fire of the forests
The water of the river
The secret of the fire
Half of you cannot be described
The other half: a priestess in...

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