So many times am I asked “why so?”
“Why do you smile while you live this way?”
Their minds unable to comprehend my life,
Strange for them to see a smile all day.
I sit by a river while resting at dusk,
My hands are dry - my clothes are torn.
My horse grazing on the luscious grass,
Relaxing for now until upon me is dawn.
By the bank of the river I begin my ablution,
The trickling of water a soothing sound.
My minor wounds take in the water,
To the rush of life I’m surely not bound.
A gentle breeze blows against my body,
A sensation of floating that calms me down.
My smile remains even though I’m tired,
This place around me is my personal town.
The sunset glows and inspires my thought,
Time seeps back to memories of hardship.
The people I’ve met and the things I’ve seen,
From friends, to partners and my very kinship.
Shackled to a reality that left me blue,
Always lost in the abyss of emptiness.
A hollow feeling that begged to be filled,
My heart of sorrow was longing for freeness.
The alternation between day and night,
Passed for years without a change in my soul.
Always journeying for the spark of life,
A journey of obstacles – like walking on coal.
Friend a word that I didn’t use too often,
For a friend is a person who is good to you.
Barely a time where a person smiled back,
When smiling at them even when I was blue.
The sun still setting as I finish my ablution,
On a tree log I rest my aching back.
Some dates I take from my pouch beside me,
Eating them happily – provision I don’t lack.
Unloading my rifle to rest the barrel,
The magazine empty – not even a round.
A long day of battle comes to a restive end,
Alone for now with no soul around.
So they asked me why I continue to smile,
Even though my life is far from bliss.
Indeed it is simple why my smile remains,
My heart has been kissed by the faithful kiss.
I found a friend, who was always there,
He always wants what’s best for me.
He sustains my life and grants me provision,
He protects my soul and allows me to see.
My Lord it was Who was always there,
My Lord it was Who wishes me the best.
My Lord it was Who sustained my life,
My Lord it was Who opened my chest.
Sometimes my heart had fallen to sadness,
As if a lock had been placed on its gate.
But unlocked it was when I turned to Him,
Seeking His forgiveness to have a clean slate.
The feeling I get when I surrender to Him,
My head firmly placed on the cold, dull ground.
At ease I am as I thank my Lord,
Thank Him greatly for what I have found.
The sun has finally met the horizon,
A fine line of gold tells me it’s time to pray.
My wounds I wrap with the tatters of my garment,
The wind still blowing as I put my hands up and say.
“Allahu Akbar” whispered from in between my lips,
A chill rides down my crippled spine.
“All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the ‘Alamin”
A verse so simple yet its meaning so fine.
Such joy it brings to a lonely soul,
The humble connection I have with my Lord.
It’s all that I have but priceless it is,
Perfect, immaculate, a feeling not flawed.
The breeze still hitting my tired body,
As I bow down slowly to praise Him again.
“Glory be to my Lord the All-Mighty” I whisper,
Words that were whispered by the best of men.
Night upon me as I continue my prayer,
A lone soldier I am near the bank of a river.
I finish my prayer and return to my log,
I look to the stars and receive a great shiver.
My life may not be a life to desire,
At least to those whose hearts are sealed.
Humble it is and it surely is poor,
But for me this life is my unbreakable shield.
They continue to ask why smile remains,
And I simply tell them “I’ve found my light”.
Baffled they are – the people of desire,
When they realize my life is nothing but bright.
After the hardship I faced in my life,
I found the thing that had set me free.
Unbound I was to the deceitful desire,
I finally found what I’m supposed to be.
A slave I am to the Most-Merciful One,
Not letting me down like the people I’ve met.
Alone I am but I have Him to guide me,
Faith had caught me as if it were a net.
So I asked them back “don’t I deserve to smile?”
After the torment I’ve faced in this place.
Doesn’t my heart deserve to beat again?
Do I not deserve to have smile on my face?
For I am at ease for finding my Lord,
I strive in His way to show my loyalty.
Night and day my wounds are open,
Every wound I receive makes me feel like royalty.
The sky above that is abundant with lamps,
Becomes my cover as I rest on my side.
The ground beneath is a bed so soft,
My humble smile makes me forget how I cried.
My breathing slows as sleep falls upon me,
Eyes closing as I look to the stars once more.
So beautiful they are – a sign of His greatness,
Glittering brightly – their light I adore.
No more sadness left in my life,
No more people who make me sad.
A life of fighting I lead from now on,
For finding my light – to Him I’m glad.
My blood flow now eases as I begin my rest,
Sleep consumes me – will I wake up tomorrow?
Who knows if my soul shall come back to me?
At least I smile and I’m not in sorrow.