The cycle of nature
brings back hope,
of a new beginning.
The Earth travels
around the sun
just to get back,
and relive this moment.
Pure and original
is the rebirth
when beauty awakes
upon spring’s first kiss.
When your hand is in my hands,
when my words are in your words,
we could get lost just walking like that.
When your breath is in my breath,
and solitude is close to us,
I put my head on your shoulder and fall asleep.
I wake up in your love,
and win by losing to you.
When you get upset, I sing to conciliate you.
My breath is complete with you,
without you there is no fulfillment.
You are my love, with you the season turns to spring.
When you are here I am at peace,
and when you are not, I despair.
My love, just tell me what more to say to you, what do you want to hear?
Everything could keep going on like this,
we keep meeting this way,
but this will only happen when you’re here.
When you’re here.
(Original in urdu by Ali Zafar from his Album Masti)
I remember the moments now past.
When hope was closer than despair still.
A friend could be called to talk about anything and everything.
Or for no reason whatsoever.
Life was good even when it made me weep.
All those small happy moments were mine to keep.
I remember before. Way before. In the past.
When the world lay at my feet still.
Hard work and dedication would always count.
At home or in the office, rewarded in generous amount.
Sky was the only limit, and just like a magic spell.
Everything always turned out well.
I remember the days of the past.
When life was full of promises still.
Simple pleasures brightened the days.
Chocolates and pure butter milk cookies with glaze.
Long breakfasts and homemade food.
Lazy evenings with friends brightened the mood.
I remember the times of the past.
When the promise of love was certain still.
Not knowing when it would be met, and where.
Made life uncertain though easy to bear.
Nights were filled with sleep.
And dreams so vivid I always wanted to keep.
Once again, we have been fortunate to have experienced another Ramadan. A month of fasting, sacrifice, giving, piousness and self-discipline. We’ve been blessed with yet another chance to improve and put our dedication to test. Another opportunity to experience the essence of Ramadan and seek the immense spiritual treasure therein.
We’ve been given a new possibility to pursue benefits for both mind and body. And through socializing at iftar, prayers, and self-control by practicing good manners, we have made our best attempts to build a feeling of peace, tranquility and self-satisfaction that we hope will extend beyond this month.
May Allah accept our attempts in the month that has passed, and grant us the opportunity to improve our efforts in the future. I wish all Muslims a happy and blessed Eid al-Fitr!
As I am praying alone in my bedroom, the electricity suddenly goes out. Complete darkness. I cannot even see my feet where I am standing. I continue to pray, in utter darkness. A distant generator starts up. A dog is barking far away. The occasional car or truck passes by on the road just in front of the house.
I finish my prayer and just sit quietly on the prayer rug. It is warm, must be over 30°C in the room, more likely closer to 35. The darkness feels suffocating, and at the same time strangely calming. I know my way around the room. And I know my mobile phone is on the bedside table. It is charged so I can turn on the flashlight app. Still, a strange kind of panic is floating just below the surface of my heart. Suffocating. I need to get out!
I walk upstairs to the roof. Electricity is back, and I see lights in the buildings across the road from our house. The evening is clear, and a gentle breeze makes the weather just perfect to be outside. It is quiet but for the occasional vehicle driving past the house.
The sun is setting and the partly overcast sky shows a graduation from deep blue to orange. Beyond the houses across the road I see green fields stretching out into the hazy horizon. This calm and fresh evening is my last here in Jalalpur Jattan before I head back to Norway. A perfect evening setting the scene for a sad goodbye. And I wonder when I get to see this sight again.
Photo from my archives (2010). Crowd weaving their flags and cheering as the children’s parade walk by, in celebration of the Norwegian constitution day on May 17th at “slottsparken” (the Palace Park), near the Royal Palace, downtown Oslo, the capital of Norway.
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