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Medinian Blues

  • Culture

By Zaynab Noor Mufti, MSc Political Thought

We visited, we prayed, and then we were asked to leave

And now we know what it’s like to grieve

Face me with misfortune or losing a limb

I’d take it any day over leaving him

But we will return and walk the land

Smell the heat and the musk in our hands

The scent of the Messenger lingering through time

We will return with the permission of the Divine

We will walk in the footsteps of the man

Who held with him the hearts of mankind

Who’s legacy preserved we find

Etched in the city’s cracks and crooked lines

Who played in markets with his boys

As his laughter echoes with the sweetest noise

We will taste the salt in the air

From his tears that constantly cared

About men and women, he’d never met

About children to come and better yet

We will rest in the places where he laid his head

Under tall date trees where he broke his bread

We will follow in the path that he tread

As he walked to the Almighty in the life that he led

And we will prostrate where he too placed his head

We will return to the land built on his blood

As he fought for our faith, for we are his beloved

As he braved the trenches and the swords and the battle scars

We will return to the land, the city lit up by the stars;

His companions threw themselves in harm’s way

To protect his life and ensure his message remained till today

We will eat from the trees that he planted with his own hands 

In gardens so vast, where his legacy stands

We will climb the mountains that he made shake

Stand on the rocks that couldn’t take the weight

Of his blessed character, because he was Muhammad the Great

(Peace and blessings be upon him)

And we did

We visited, we prayed, and then we were asked to leave

And now we know what it’s like to grieve

To be in the land where his close ones died

Where victories were won and celebratory cries

Were heard through the streets

And the faithful ones weeped

For the oneness of God was proclaimed

And His commandments were ordained

We will return to the city where we watch the sun set between minarets

And the call to prayer is loud and clear

Rung with pride all these years

Where it wakes up the sleeping one so that he may stand in line

To attest to the greatness of the Most-High and the Messenger as a sign

Where the community of the faithful hold him so dear 

Where we send him Salaam (Arabic, lit: peace) standing so near

Where our tears drop in the same spots as his

Where our voices ring in the same air that his did

Where we seek the same closeness to God as him

Where we whisper to God in our prayer, following his actions to the tee

We will return so that we may see

His legacy as it stands today

And drink from the spring that he also sipped

And walk under the sun where his blessed sweat dripped

And we did

We visited, we prayed, and then we were asked to leave

And now we know what it’s like to grieve

So, oh pilgrim who makes his way

Know that there will come a day

Where you’ll leave this all behind

And as you exit the city with him in mind

Just take a piece back in your heart

So that you can bare the pain of being apart

From the one who filled the city with light

And by remembering his strength and might

We continue our journey and build our lives

And upon whose wisdom our faith will thrive

Because if the trunks of the trees couldn’t help but weep

When the beloved departed, my Lord, what about those like me?

So, dearest pilgrim

In your own town when you prepare to leave

Pack your bags, but just be ready to grieve.

Photo Caption: The Garden of Salman al-Farsi which contains 300 date-palm trees, the seeds of which were planted by the Prophet (PBUH)(Photo Credit: Zaynab Mufti)

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