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Ramadan 2010: MM Poetry Contest | Semifinalists, Day 3

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Day 1Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | The Finals

Welcome to day three! Now that we’re publishing the semifinalists, please do check out each day’s poems and cast your vote.

Note: Voting for poems published on Day 3 closes today! Cast your vote if you haven’t yet!

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A quick recap on how it’s going to be:

1) We’re going to publish four shortlisted poems a day, for five days.
2) Each day, you, the public, vote for the poem that you like best out of the four published.
3) The poems with the most votes from each day will go on to the final round, where a second poll will decide the winner and runners up.

Simple, eh?

As beautiful as the poems all are, and we are indeed experiencing the Holy month of Ramadan, the spirit of the competition can be pretty overwhelming. That’s why here’s a simple reminder to keep it clean, and wholesome, healthy competitiveness that adds to the fun but does not hurt anyone in anyway.:)

Without further ado, here’s the third group of semifinalists for your pleasurable reading.

Please don’t forget to vote!

_____________________________________________________________

Welcome Ramadan
By: Syed Muneeb Shere

I wonder how you welcome Ramadan
Do you wait for it with open arms?
And when it comes, give it a welcome warm?
Or do you grumble and believe that harm
Is hunger to health or is thirst too hard?
And it fascinates me how you treat your fast
Do you wake up grumbling before dawn?
To eat a morsel, on your face a frown?
And then do you pray, with a sleepy brain
Your morning prayer, before the time is gone?

And do you sleep, through out the day?
Or does your fast get in your way
When you are told to do some work
Other than chatting, or gossiping, or play?
Does your fast stop when you lie?
Or does the fast pass as every normal day?
In entertainment, untruths and useless bray?
Is that how you treat Ramadan?

Or when fast is broken, do you eat your feed?
Without caring about those in need?
Is a day’s hunger not sufficient to make you heed
Or your heart yearns not towards a good deed?
Or does it not pain you, your every bad deed?
Is not Ramadan, enough to take lead?
Of your misguided selfish deeds?
Is that how you treat Ramadan?

And in the mosque, at the time of night
When is recited, the book of light
Do you spend the time in flight?
From your Lord and in useless fights?
Does not your conscience bite?
Your heart or is it too much still
To make you stir for the path which is right
Is that how you treat Ramadan?

Beware the month of forgiveness and mercy
Do you not take from the hell fright?
Or do you not wish to be pure and white
To rush towards your Lord and the guiding light?
Return before you reach the height
When time is over and your insight
Becomes frightfully clear and bright
O Man waste not your Ramadan
_______________________________________________________________

Iftar Table Musings
By: Sohaib Baig

The medjool dates are ready, so is my glass of water
I sit with my watch
a million thoughts slide by
as quietly as the distant, setting sun
the day’s struggles
the thirst
the hunger
the tedious incomplete work
the forthcoming night
my eyes close, but my mind stays awake
my stomach growls, counting the time
as if it can be counted

What is time, but a hideous distraction
An anchor pulling us back to this gargantuan world,
cutting it into small, edible bits
but there really is no time – only timelessness
for this is not really a world – only an evanescing phase
our souls are on an eternal journey,
created from long before, headed for something much greater
we have to weave our way
maneuver past this world’s tight fist
stamp out our cold, befuddled shivers
open our eyes for the first time, truly
then bask in the tranquil openness, and warmness
inside rivers with no banks and valleys with no peaks
under a sun with endless streams of light
and gaze at our Lord
freely, peacefully, unendingly
and all alone.

we all have been marauding around
like uninvited guests, though we were invited
eating the forbidden fruit, hiding behind leaves
few, if ever, see through the deftly-woven branches
and notice the rays of light and Mercy
streaming, encompassing our nomadic worlds
giving life to our automated lives
He offers us forgiveness
all these Ramadans, all these Prayers
all this Qur’an, all these Qiyams
but we deftly press the snooze button

how far we are from Him,
yet how close He is to us.

_____________________________________________________________________

Ramadan Renewal

By: Bassem Elghawaby

A blessed month is upon us

Striving…

To shed a past year’s sins…

To sow the seeds to withstand the coming seasons…

To find that place that I’ve seen, that I’ve been…

To return where my heart and my soul so yearn…

To connect in prayer in a way that I’m truly there…

To shatter the subtle, the hidden distractions…

To rediscover the joy of the small kindness…

To strengthen the family and community ties that binds us…

To remove enmity from my heart, and sabotage from my soul…

To become what is most pleasing to my Lord

To make the transformational tangible…

And solidify gains, so they’re not merely circumstantial

To erase doubts, leaving no terrain to become gradual…

To channel the gifts given to me by Allah

Towards endeavours that benefit others…

To apply knowledge before it testifies against me…

To make repentance my natural abode…

To make consistency a primary contingency…

To propel me past the shackles of lingering resistance

To ascertain the judgement needed…

To navigate around the traps of Shaytan and the heedless…

To capitalize on this time, where his whispers have less opportunity to cloud minds…

To build on momentum from even before day one…

To position oneself as best one can…

For the exorbitant blessings found in the final ten…

To truly recognize…

Who it is that brings tears to our eyes…

And renew that broken pledge never to compromise

“O’Allah, we seek from You acceptance, forgiveness, and a rejuvenated faith,
A Path to the Garden, a Path that is Straight.”

And so begins a beautiful race…

{Race with one another in hastening towards forgiveness from your Lord, and Paradise…} (Qur’an 57: 21)

______________________________________________________________________

Shawwal
By: Sabour B. (Sayf)

The star had become the source of his bane,

Even though he was born to live by its acclaim.

It wasn’t that he hated, he really just preferred,

To indulge in darkness without being disturbed.

The vast vacuity along his endless chase,

Glared on by shine trickling from his heart’s base.

Vision would grow darker, with every step he took away,

His emptiness would become space, to keep the gleam at bay.

Suffocate light with darkness – a foolish goal!

Yet he was an arms-length from succeeding in tearing a black hole.

A permanent rift in his heart, a void with no remorse,

An immovable object that would challenge the light’s unstoppable force.

But luckily for him, a witness witnessed and a caller called,

And he was given a chance to make amends for it all.

Now a pulsar, the faint light knocked with its glow,

Like the tell-tale heart of Edgar Allen Poe.

“It’s the beating of that hideous heart!” He screeched in pain!

Furious in Ramadan, yearning to make all his work vain!

He began to flare, leaving a state of slumber,

Ready to take on 335 with only 30 in number.

“Impossible!” He sneered in conceit.

“Do you really think that I would be so easy to defeat?

I’ve seized you tight with my grip of grim,

Commanding an endless onslaught,

While you’re nothing but a Ramadan Muslim!”

But yet every time his body hit the ground,

With complete humility,

And every time he spoke,

With kind sensibility,

And every time he eased the hardship of others,

To the best of his ability,

He battered violently at those empty words,

To the core of their instability,

While he found himself in a state

Of peace and tranquility.

With the increase in recitation and tears,

Came an increase in apprehension and fears.

With the silent contemplation of every solitary hour,

Came a sudden surge in extraordinary power.

Every day his heart had more to remember,

It seemed that he was the one holding the hot ember.

And just like that in a flash of time,

He was eating once again during the day’s prime.

His heart now radiating its light on others,

Coolness to the eyes of his sisters and brothers.

He was the one who responded to the Ramadan call,

And here he was now,

A Muslim in Shawwal.

____________________________________________________________________

[polldaddy poll=3696091]

Enjoyed Day 3? There’s more! Check out: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 4 | Day 5 | The Finals

Links will activate as each day arrives!

Keep supporting MuslimMatters for the sake of Allah

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The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Ameera is a final-year medical student and blogger based in Karachi, Pakistan. Having been born and raised in Tabuk, Saudi Arabia, her approach towards her Deen has always been rooted in a basic understanding from authentic sources, which was further polished during a three-year weekend course at Al Huda Institute. Her interests, though, seem to know no bounds and range from a passion for the culinary arts and travelling, as well as following current affairs and global happenings. She feels being able to be part of MuslimMatters is one of the major blessings of Allah(swt) upon her, for it has given her a chance to learn and grow. She also maintains her personal blog at http://duskanddawn.wordpress.com.

30 Comments

30 Comments

  1. Pingback: Ramadan 2010: MM Poetry Contest | Semifinalists, Day 2 | MuslimMatters.org

  2. Pingback: Ramadan 2010: MM Poetry Contest | Semifinalists, Day 1 | MuslimMatters.org

  3. Amad

    August 31, 2010 at 1:31 AM

    Wow Sayf, that was incredible.
    For me it was a tough choice between Sohaib’s and Sayf’s, not that the other two were any less.

    But I will say that whoever wins this day, may be in the front seat :) Just my personal observation, no rigging implicated :) This isn’t Egypt.

  4. Son of Adam

    August 31, 2010 at 1:56 AM

    Mashallah. Definitely Sohaib’s Poem.

    Truly purposeful with beauty radiating through words.

    Allah blesses those whom He loves.

  5. Daughter of Hawwa

    August 31, 2010 at 2:07 AM

    Thank you to the “Iftaar Table Musings” and “Shawwal” poets for being unique. I voted for the former because it had the most individual concept through it from beginning to end. However the latter is still a superb job for not having to incessantly talk about Ramadan and instead introduced the new concept of how Ramadan is not about Ramadan – it’s about what comes after. Thank you to both. May Allah bless you all, ameen.

  6. Raakin Hossain

    August 31, 2010 at 2:50 AM

    None other than Sohaib’s poem! Insightful and deep. A typical work from a Baig. =P Masha-Allah!

    I love how he ties it up with the last two lines, leaving a good sense of guilt in your heart.

  7. abez

    August 31, 2010 at 4:18 AM

    This one is a really, really hard decision. SubhanAllah!

  8. Maaz

    August 31, 2010 at 4:41 AM

    Shawwal
    By: Sabour B. (Sayf)… MashaAllah… the best so far.

  9. Z

    August 31, 2010 at 6:22 AM

    Hardest decision yet.

  10. Maryam

    August 31, 2010 at 4:45 PM

    ma shaa Allah i love shawal poem i felt it was very creative n twisty :)

  11. Sohaib

    September 1, 2010 at 3:50 AM

    I liked Muneeb’s poem as it rhymes beautifully

    • diluted

      September 4, 2010 at 5:06 AM

      The only poem that has rythem along with thought full with essences of Ramazan.
      Rest of the Poems are inner thoughts put out in lines. (AZAD SHAIREE)

      Great work….

      Muneeb you have my vote…..

  12. hasan kamal

    September 1, 2010 at 12:37 PM

    i like muneebs poem the most ….. it awesom.. like no others in this world

  13. Pingback: Ramadan 2010: MM Poetry Contest | Semifinalists, Day 4 | MuslimMatters.org

  14. Sohaib

    September 1, 2010 at 11:44 PM

    I like the poem of my brother

  15. Akbar

    September 2, 2010 at 2:28 AM

    who ever does not vote for Safs poem is a doughnut ……. a halal one

    • Nas

      September 2, 2010 at 3:41 PM

      Consider me a donut.

    • Daughter of Hawwa

      September 2, 2010 at 11:23 PM

      Sohaib’s and Sayf’s poems should be first and second place in this entire contest (all five days). It would be sad if one of these two don’t advance into the finals.

      Don’t make dua for your friend to win. Make dua for the best poem to win.

      Wish for your brother what you wish for yourself.

  16. brother

    September 2, 2010 at 3:52 PM

    Hey muneeb ur already winning why u need me to vote for you? calm down bro ;)

  17. Broski

    September 2, 2010 at 4:43 PM

    WOoooo sabour!! i believe in u!! u can do it!! woooooooo!!

  18. Sayf

    September 3, 2010 at 12:32 AM

    Thanks everyone, I’m glad you guys enjoyed reading my newbie poem – it was a lot of fun to write!
    Careful with calling people food, it’s Ramadan someone might get eaten. =O}

  19. Umar Farooq

    September 3, 2010 at 12:46 AM

    Welcum ramadanws nyc ndShawwalws also gud..!!!!!!

  20. Arshi

    September 3, 2010 at 1:09 AM

    Mashallah !Muneeb ur poem has a beautiful choice of words and i really like your poem the best though i must appreciate other lil contestants who bothered to take out their precious time for such a healthy competition and all have done well .

  21. ismaeel shariq

    September 3, 2010 at 4:45 AM

    bro muneeb u dont really need votes…do u?????u can jst win without them……gd luck for the finals

    • Umar Farooq

      September 3, 2010 at 11:51 AM

      Who r u saying gud luck 2,…:-) dis guy wud not b able 2 see ur response coz ryt now he iz sittin in aetakaf…!!!!! :-)

  22. Pingback: Ramadan 2010: MM Poetry Contest | Semifinalists, Day 5 | MuslimMatters.org

  23. Ayesha A.

    September 3, 2010 at 4:40 PM

    i like sohaib’s poem..iftar musing..keep up the good work!!!

  24. Pingback: MM Ramadan 2010 Poetry Contest: The Finals | MuslimMatters.org

  25. Pingback: Action Attraction – 2009 Free verse | Bassem's Bringit! Blog

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