Sunday, July 6, 2008

A poem by Babar Ahmad

Babar Ahmad is a British citizen who was first arrested in December 2003 in the UK for six days, during which he was physically and emotioanlly abused, and then released without charge.

Babar was rearrested in August 2004 on an extradition warrant from the US based on a claim that he tried to solicit suport for "acts of terror" in Afghanistan and Chechenya through websites and emails.

Babar's case is currently with the European Court of Human Rights which has requested a hold on the extradition.

More here

I did not know about Br. Babar's case until I received an email with a heartfelt poem he wrote - may Allah (swt) grant him and his family the faith and strength to get through this ordeal:
Down Memory Well
Babar Ahmad

Last night I lay awake unable to sleep,
As I let my soul wander too deep.
My heart was in doubt about Your Promise,
No-one could give me solace.

My soul left my body and my body left my cell,
As I pulled up my pail from Memory Well.
I journeyed back to the time of my birth,
Not knowing then what it was worth.

What I discovered was a chest of treasure,
As I realized You had blessed me without measure.
I remembered all the good You had done for me,
In all my years when my body was free.

I was hungry and You fed me,
I was bare and You clothed me.
I was alone and You gave me company,
By blessing me with friends and family.

When I was sick You cured me.
When I was hurt You healed me.
When I was sad You cheered me up.
When I was broken You fixed me up.

I veered off the path but You brought me back.
I lost my footing but You set me on track.
I went astray but You gave me direction.
I felt afraid but You gave me protection.

When the pack of beasts savaged me that day,
And the racist devils mocked how I pray,
I asked You for death but You gave me life.
I asked it to end but You gave me respite.

As I lay in pain in the cell that December,
You sent me a gift I will always remember.
A dream unlike I had ever seen before.
A vision that made my spirit soar.

What I saw that winter's night,
Turned my darkness into light.
Even as I bled to the bone,
I knew then that I was not alone.

You set me free so my body could heal,
And my heart and soul could recover their zeal.
You were preparing me for what lay ahead:
A path of peril, fear and dread.

Once again You blessed me with captivity,
And made me into someone I never dreamed to be.
O Allah! I never sought all this attention,
That I got because of my detention.

The more they defamed me the more You honored me.
The more they detained me the more the blind could see.
The harder it got the more You helped me.
The darker it got the more You enlightened me.

As I then gazed at my memories in the pail,
I began to see beyond the veil.
I truly was an ungrateful servant,
Whose woes appeared ever so fervent.

As my feelings of sorrow turned into shame,
I realized I had only myself to blame.
How dare I moan about my pain,
When others far worse did not complain?

My throbs of doubt transformed into certainty,
As I fell asleep with my soul in serenity.
I had quenched my thirst from Memory Well,
And pulled myself out from my own hell.

O Allah, forgive me for my ingratitude!
O Allah, ignore my shameful attitude!
You were always there when I wanted You to be,
And I know now that You will never abandon me.

Babar Ahmad MX5383, HMP Manchester
September 2007, Ramadan 1428


nadia said...

It is only when we silent the blaring sounds of our daily existence that we can finally hear the whispers of truth that life reveals to us, as it stands knocking on the doorsteps of our hearts. ~K.T. Jong

Babar Ahmad was able to pour out his inner thoughts so purely, for he was no longer deafened by the blaring sounds of his daily existence.

Such a beautiful poem indeed.

Huda Shaka` said...

Such a beautiful quote too - thanks for sharing, Nadia.

Megan said...


This was really awesome! I think I've read another poem by him as well that was really really moving. Masha'Allah. Thank you for sharing.