Olva Stewart Pharo, artist

The Listening Mare of the Anazeh

Listening Mare

As the legend goes. . . .

One evening after a raid on a neighboring tribe the Anazeh Bedouins made camp for the night.

A sheik of that tribe unsaddled his mare and turned her out with her foal as was his custom. A tribesman noticed the mare just standing there staring off into the distance ignoring her feed.

"What troubles your mare?", he asked of the sheik.

The sheik became concerned that she would not eat and put a feedbag on her head. As soon as she took a bite she stopped and stared again always in the same direction; listening to some far off sound beyond the hearing of men.

He caused her to run and she just ran in a circle and returned to the same spot to take up her vigil again - listening intently.

The sheik became convinced she was hearing danger, that it was a war party of their enemy in pursuit. "We must pack at once and journey on tonight," he shouted.

The other tribesmen laughed at him as he packed up his family and servants, folded his tents, saddled his mare and set off into the night leaving the rest of the tribe behind.

In the predawn hours the enemy of the Anazeh swept down upon the sleeping camp and massacred them all - all except the sheik and his family and "The Listening Mare of the Anazeh".

Ever after her descendants carried the name "Kehilan al Maisan" - "Listening Horses" and are highly valued for their intelligence and beauty.

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Last update: 15 February, 2012