The Proposal


The thought had come and swiftly gone
At least a dozen times that day,
Then like a close and dear friend,
It caught itself and chose to stay,

And cause a stir in Ali’s heart,
Who gently put his burden down,
Then stretched his sore and ailing self
Upon the parched and dusty ground.

And where he lay upon the dust,
The burning sun shone down upon
The son Medina doted on:
Ali, the soldier, scholar, scribe.

How could a poor man like he
With not a dirham to his name
Aspire so, he shook his head
But considered it just the same.

Good men of higher standing tried,
But everyone had been denied
Their wish to marry Fatima,
Sweet piety personified.

The crisp adhan cut through the air
And shook young Ali from his thoughts,
The lowly water carrier
Broke from his work and made for prayer.

And as he found his lips complete
The call to claim the harvest high,
The indecision left him, for
In every thought does action lie.

The soldier ambled out of prayer,
And saw the man he dearly loved,
The Prophet, making for his home,
His fragrant scent perfumed the air.

With quickened heart and pace to match,
He came to where the Prophet was,
Who turned around and with a smile
Said thus to end the pregnant pause:

“Upon you Peace, Abu Turab”,
To which Ali responded and
Proceeded to articulate
His plea for young Fatima’s hand.

The smile upon the Prophet’s face
Grew brighter as he drew Ali
Towards him, then the words he said
Set Ali’s tender heart to race:

“And what shall be my daughter’s dower?”,
To which did Ali promptly yield,
“The worth of my sole property:
My coat of mail and trusted shield”.

And thus a seed of thought had found,
In young Ali, its fertile ground,
Then from it sprung a blessed tree
That bore its fruit for all to see.

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