By Alqamah ibn Abada
So leave her, and cast care from thy heart with a sturdy mount–a camel that ambles tireless, carrying riders twain;
To Harith, the generous Lord, I drive her unsparing on, with pantings that shake her breast and throb through her ribs and flanks:
A fleet runner whose flesh over sides and where neck meets hump has vanished beneath noon-tide’s hot breath and the onward press;
And yet after night’s long toil the dawn breaks and finds her fresh as antelope, young and strong, that flees from the hunter’s pack:
They crouched by the artà-brake, the hunters, and thought to win a safe prey: but she escaped their shafts and pursuing hounds.
So travels my beast, and makes her object a man far off, and little by little gains the way to his bounteous hand.
Yet, thou was her labor’s end–God keep thee from curse, O King! and through all the Desert’s sameness sped she, beset with fears.
Towards thee the Pole-stars led, and there where men’s feet had passed a track plain to see that wound by cairns over ridges scarred.
There bodies of beasts outworn lay thickly along the road, their bones gleaming white, their hides all shriveled and hard and dry.
I bring her to drink the dregs of cisterns all mire and draff; and if she mislikes it, all the choice is to journey on.