excerpts from “ALI” (formerly “HAGDAR”)

The following excerpts have been selected from a long-term project called ‘Ali’ (formerly ‘Hagdar’), an American English epic poem exploring the life and times of Ali ibn Abi Talib (عَلِيّ ٱبْن أَبِي طَالِب), the cousin, companion, and successor of the Prophet Muhammad. When completed, the poem is estimated to be roughly 10,000 lines in length, spanning almost a century of Arab and Islamic history.

 

 

In the name of the Most Gracious, Merciful,

The Master of the heavens and the earth,

The Knower of the hidden and the bared,

In God’s Most Gracious name I now begin:

 

So sing, O ancient bards, of ageless kings

From far and wide, who spread their spacious wings

Above the lengthy lands and endless seas! Continue reading “excerpts from “ALI” (formerly “HAGDAR”)”

Jalsa: a short story

“Bro, this queer’s fleeked out or some shit.”

Ameer had understood only two words from that sentence: “this” and “or”.

The others must have been in a vernacular unfamiliar to him. After all, he was aware that American English varied by region. When he had heard the sentence in class, whispered schemingly from one classmate to another, he had scrambled to write it down. He only hoped that he had spelled it out correctly: “brow this kweerz flekout or semshet”. He had hoped to look the words up later. Continue reading “Jalsa: a short story”