The Child Woman
By : Ali Taha Alnobani
Translated by : Fateh Kassab
© 2011 by THE BIRD(http://www.thebirdali.com/)
Abu Mejhem entered the tent silently, and then he looked at his wife, Terfah, and said "Get Ala'noud ready".
"What for?" asked Terfah.
"To leave to her husband's house. She was chosen to be (Ghoret Almadda) answered Abu Mejhem.
"But she is still a child; she isn't thirteen yet" said Terfah.
Abu Mejhem stared at her fiercely,… so she stopped and kept silent.
A hot tear flew on her cheek when she saw her little daughter playing with the children in front of the tent.
Mansour was a member of Abu Mejhem's tribe. He killed a man from another tribe, so the tribal court obliged Abu Mejhem's tribe to pay the killed man's tribe a number of goats, camels, and a young bride for the Sheikh of the killed man's tribe. Anoud was that bride.
Terfah was singing sad lyrics
"Oh, my poor little child. What did you do, that made you leave your tribe, your father's tent and your little friends."
She was at the same time packing her daughter's clothes in a package. Her tears were flowing on her cheeks. She was watching her child once, and hugging and kissing her clothes another. She hailed Alanoud. When she approached, Terfah seated her on her lap. Her sad singing and crying raised.
Abu Mejhem entered the tent and led the girl by hand and delivered her to her new family.
Anoud didn't understand what was going on. She traveled away from her tribe. After a long day journey, she arrived to her tent in the new tribe. She was shocked to see a tall, broad shouldered man with flocks of hair dangling under his head scarf (koufiah).
Two or three hours later, Anoud became the fourth wife of Sheikh Juai'd. But she was the inferior one, because she was (Ghoret Almadda).
1- (Ghoret Almadda) is a Bedouin term for a woman who is sometimes given upon the demand of the tribe members from which a man is killed, as a part of compensation. When this happens, it is meant to cause more humiliation to the tribe of the killer. The term is especially used to indicate to any woman being abused by her husband.
2- The story is based upon real events that used to happen in the past. This may still happen until now, but not in public.