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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Night Journey

The Night Journey

We have made the night and the day for two signs: the sign of the night do we obscure, but the sign of the day cause we to shine forth, that ye may seek plenty from your Lord, and that ye may know the number of the years and the reckoning of time; and we have made everything distinct by distinctiveness.

~ The Night Journey

In the darkness of shadows,

Struggling, I cry in despair—

No moon to guide me and the stars,

Those stars left me to fend and fare;

Why do you despise me, why, why?

All alone, I struggle to find meaning;

Coddled for years, I must relearn,

Like a child from a mother’s teat weaning—

“My precious, precious child” I hear above,

“Look to the sky, like the Prophet once did,

Though the stars are black as quartz,

And the moon do fare-thee-well bid,

Remember these following golden rules

And you will no longer be alone and mute.”

The ominous, billowing voice begins,

“a-b, the root for your ancestors and father,

Respect and worship like you do with me; a-b-d;

For those that follow the straight path; a-d-l;

Have nothing to fear, they will not be destroyed—a-d-m;

Or obliterated, smooshed to smitherines—a-f-w—

Do you follow, my child?” He quietly asks,

“Yes, my Father,” Looking up from my current task.

“Those that submit to me, will unite as one—a-h-d,

Adore the heavens with me, turn to me—a-l-h—

Teach your progeny about the grace of the book, ‘a-l-m,

Have hope that they will not stray from the path,

Meditate, sing, dance, and praise my creations, a-m-l.

Join your mother in knitting for the poor, a-q-d,

Discover the beauty behind da’wa,

Announce your love for those less fortunate, ‘a-r-f.

Respect your virtue from those that charm,

Be strong, fortify your conscience, ‘a-z-z.

Your love for me will always be everlasting,

As are the letters of b-q-y and d-v-n;

Invite those who are skeptical,

In the root of d-a-a, but bear in mind—

Dh-k-r; some can be very stubborn,

Unlike f-t-m, don’t abstain from your friends,

Instead look to the advice of gh-n-y;

Praise the world and sing of joy around you,

Clean and cleanse the evil that lurks, gh-s-l.

Be like the jinn—j-n-n, magical and concealed—

Fill your heart with h-b-b—love and devotion,

But not h-s-d—green with envy,

For the envious don’t flourish.

Never be like z-l-m—dark and gloomy,

For sh-r-r—evil and wickedness loom there.

If you follow my lesson and path, w-l-y;

You will be wealthy and full of happiness—m-r-‘.

Never forget the love of your family or mine.”

The once billowing voice, now meek,

Disappear into the vast horizon of night;

The once hidden moon now peeks

And the stars shine their praise—

I lift my arms to the sky, with tearful eyes,

My new voice now clear, in the clouds raise.

A note about this poem. In Arabic, words are made up of a root system that is constructed by three principle letters. An Arabic dictionary is usually listed by the roots instead of alphabetically (however, a lot of beginner dictionaries are in Arabic ا ب ت format). These root words help a speaker figure out the connotation of the word and how to conjugate words in the verb, noun and predicate forms. Please check out the following website for a complete list of Arabic roots since my poem only contains a few:

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