Struggle

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Two opposing realities… where one is just a dream, the other a fantasy.
Is it your blind faith or your hopelessness?
What do I represent to you?
‘Nothing else in the Dunya has any worth’
Is it because I showed you love?

Nothing by chance. Qadr Allah.
What significance to our meeting?
The implosion of two hurt souls.
A child so beautiful to behold.
What is she owed?

This pressure in my brain… the knowledge of what must unfold
A certainty against a backdrop of the untold.
A resolution of the irrevocable… is this all still just impossible?

Faith in Allah for ‘verily He loves those who place their trust in Him.’
My head spins
At the magnitude… at the certitude… at the fact that you have become ‘that’ you.
Who am I to question your path?
Who am I to ask?
Have we reached an impasse?

‘You could never love someone like me’ you screamed in the dark;
Enraged at the wrongs that crushed your soul…
But the heart knows-
I did love you and all I wanted was to hold, console and make you whole… to fill that gaping hole.

‘Tell me now that you hate me!’
But I could not let you go,
Clinging to you as you clung to me with your desperate choke-hold;
Forcing me to go, willing me to know…

Destructive cycles, self-fulfilling prophecies of old… pushing me away to prove that I would go,
Learning too late that the flagellation couldn’t break that heart-hold.
Putting distances of miles, centuries and insurmountables between us only to be told-
‘I love you and I never let you go’
Even apart I always felt your soul.

What we had wasn’t based on unity.
Its roots were firmly sunk in agony.
Did you ever even love me?
I can feel that nothing much remains…
Of what it used to be…
No longer ‘devotion’… a pulling away.

Do I even want you to stay?
What would it take?
A total annihilation of self…
Then who would I be?
If all of me was effaced.

You threw it all away.
Should I relinquish who I was created to be?
This life is not a game.
Should I exist merely as an accessory to your pain?

You’ve lost interest…
As I knew that you would- all along…
As I knew that you would once you had attained your goal…
Regained control…
Only Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala has a claim to my soul.

Can I pick up where I left off when I put my life back on hold
Move back into the light…
Back towards the unknown…
This darkness depletes me
Stay or go

Living through my own recurring worst nightmare…
this doesn’t feel like that dream…
Where I lie in your arms and your love for me covers me…
Where you’d swallow your whole pride whole not to damage me…
Where you’d take on the whole wide world… just to ‘stand by me’…

I don’t know what scares me most…
Is it the eternally being without you?
Or that you just might let me go?
Or is it the stepping out into that black hole?

In truth you’re already gone and were never really here
I was always fighting this battle alone.
A beautiful dream; heart-breakingly painful to recall…
Like a mirage it has always been unrealised;
Spurring me on… to my own demise.

So…

The question then isn’t how I can change you but whether I can ‘sustain’ you
Or whether I’ll sever the chains that bind my soul.
And finally, achingly, truly let you go…

I don’t yet know

2014

Taking Risks

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I have taken many risks. I can’t remember when I became a risk-taker or for that matter when fear started to encroach upon my horizon and make me hesitant… I lost my sense-of self for a time… taking risks.  I became so bogged down in the consequences of my blind risk-taking, taking risks I didn’t even realise were such until retrospect as it characteristically does, stepped in with its hindsight-wisdom. I took risks and I paid the price of impulsivity and I lost my way for a time… I lost my way whilst being unaware of where it was I was going… I didn’t know the location, the destination was unknown and the purpose of the journey was hidden from me… veiled… unclear. I lost my way and became entrenched in the things one becomes entrenched in… and they broke me down… living ‘where they wild things are’. I finally learned to mistrust, after brightly claiming I wasn’t given to such, and became enmeshed in things that eroded my vitality… and left me crumbling… I tried to grasp that glowing ember; that fast extinguishing flame; that flickering pilot inside me, that recognised that I have a soul… that which responded to the right words… hidden within the mindy-riddle of his broken world. I ultimately crumbled and began to come apart, my tortured mind began to bear the brunt of my battered heart. I took a risk. I fled, I wandered, I tried to hold fast to who I’d been, I strove to go forward to who they said I should have been. I struck out into the unknown, casting off into the abyss…

I took the risk that He would catch me and… He did.

inna lillahi wa inna lilayhi raji’un

Barbed Wire

Black knots and spears; silhouetted against a flame and orchid dusk; exquisite colour-palette sparking a longing to pour fourth but the words don’t come. Hemmed in by invisible tethers, inspired yet fettered, by a sense of my own words’ lack of worth… wanting to speak but afraid to say… to presume to contribute to the flow… to the discourse.

I am saturated with that which I have failed to express, that which I have suppressed; holding in the sentiments as I withhold my breath… suffocating but not dead yet. On my mark and preparing to step… into my voice… to sound it aloud, to call into the crowd, to echo in the void… slowly building inside the wherewithal to make my own noise and to convey my authentic self with my own poise.

Finally finding my own way, without need to pretend to have the answers, or to ‘fit’ … I am in myself ‘whole’; uniquely created by Him- to be just like this… to fail, to fall and rise, and to ‘make a hames of it’… to assert my imperfection… here I am… this is it.

I am sufficient; work in progress, in transition… evolving as I sit observing and absorbing… internalising all of it… hardly recalling who I was at the outset.

Cycles of content and restlessness… anchored by something imperceptible… something of fear and bliss.

Dreaming big… frustrated by wings become clipped… fluttering, stretching, straining… against the weight of it… against the limits of this barbed-wire cage… aching to soar and flit… to be free of this Dunya and to reconnect with the Source of it; with my Creator… to be where He is.

Longing to melt back into what I was created with, free of this restrictive life-form, which keeps me repeatedly ensnared… in this barbed-wire world… swept by the sway of each directional breeze; never truly at ease… struggling hard to find the courage just to be.

Stuff Might Come Up

cascade‘Stuff might come up’ she advised us with characteristic candour. I wondered fleetingly what could remain in me to rise to the surface; what coded secrets lay yet in the depths of my untapped unconscious. The thought checked me only momentarily… gave way to only momentary pause… before my burdened mind, struggling to keep pace with her insight-laden flow, broke free of that which it had snagged upon and resumed its headlong dash in pursuit of the underlying significance of her words, as they poured forth in ever-measured tone… fighting the previously-set limits of my comprehension in an attempt to process in real-time the complexity which she spoke… grasping at clues, implications and the edges of meaning that disappeared from the peripheral view of my consciousness… just as I thought I might catch hold… information overload.

I took her note of caution as a truth… curious only as to what it foretold… what I might stand to glean that hadn’t already been exposed, that might be unlocked and revealed to me, the magnitude of what it could potentially mean, to make the choice to lean, in, to the unknown, to the unforeseen… to inhale it and let it wash over me and go deeper than I’d ever previously been… anticipation and, somewhere lurking, anxiety… not unobserved by any means… tentatively ready, undeniably edgy, still somewhat on my guard… mentally preparing myself in that instant for the plunge… for going no-holds-barred… to go hard. Continue reading

Transient

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This morning I awoke acutely aware of my first-born’s imminent departure from the childish realm of single-digits and ‘childhood’ into double digits and everything that lies in store for him during the next decade of his life in this Dunya in sha Allah. I look forward, with trepidation, to the time… to entering a new era together… a sense of optimism that is tinged with fear, that I may not rise to the challenge and ever truly become the mother I thought I would be to him; and sadness and regret, at the ways and numerous times that I have undoubtedly failed him.

In many ways it feels like a fresh start and in others like the loss of the baby that I’ve loved so much and erroneously thought I’d always have to hold; the gift and blessing of whom I often took for granted… and now he’s half-way grown… and I feel like I’m watching sand running through an hourglass. I want the time back. I want to do every moment over. I want to cradle him in my arms again for the very first time, skin-to-skin; brand-new, warm, trusting and wise, and to gaze again for the very first time into his beautiful baby face and soulful, knowing eyes. I want to go back to when I had never wronged him or let him down and bask in the unspoiled beauty of that indescribable encounter once again, unblighted by my perpetual guilt and the pain of perceived loss, his and mine.

It is as though in his reaching this milestone I have caught my first real glimpse of the terrible truth I had previously been willfully blind to… that we must one day take leave of one another… and the stark reality is that I have foolishly wasted countless precious moments, locked in the depths of my own fears and frustrations, sombre moods and pensive mind… when instead I could have been rejoicing in his company. These realisations make my heart ache but equally fill me with determination not to waste another minute… not to allow those past  years to have been in vain but rather to learn from the irrevocable and this near anguish within me; to take it as a lesson, hard-learned, and to let it serve as a powerful reminder of the temporality of life and the finite nature of our time.

17.08.2016

Weekly Photo Challenge: The Road Taken

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Early one morning last December my children and I were out walking our usual well-beaten path when we were surprised to see billowing smoke rising in the air not too far ahead of us. As we drew closer to the apparent source of it we were suddenly  greeted with a loud noise, which we couldn’t identify at first but after a moment discerned to be a steam-train, setting out from our local station. Although we couldn’t see the train itself from our vantage point we stopped and stood watching the tell-tale smoke-trail; turning to follow it with our eyes as it passed the length of the promenade before rounding the headland, South-bound and out of sight.

Weekly Photo Challenge: The Road Taken

Haven

My feet have tread this shore so many times
Pebble crunch and damp sand
The scent of the sea
The ebb and flow creeps and retreats
And my soul keeps the rhythm of the waves
In the comfort of the dark that envelops me

My son is the light in the window
And it’s emanating glow
He’s the lighthouse beacon that cuts through the night
Now… and now… and now…
He is moonlight and moonlight on water
Illuminating my way back home
Seems he’s been here with me forever
His doe-eyes have seen more than he shows Continue reading