2. Died but not Dead I
It is six years,
And more than 2000 days
Since our mother passed on,
And to this day, her passing
Through the eaves of death
Is a matter for me to
How do you imagine his companions
Felt the day the Prophet passed on?
Poor Omar, feeling sick like a dog -
"Stop trippin’ me, man
He ain’t dead, stop trippin’ me, man
You are just being cruel, man…
In fact … I will CHOP OFF the head
Of the NEXT man who says that to me!"
2008. It was a solemn Syawal (the month following blessed Ramadhan) evening back in 2008, when the above prose was recorded. It is now almost 3 years since and still I am in the business of comprehending Mama's passing.
2002. My mother passed away in May of 2002, when she released her last breath with a prayer, "Dear Lord, shall You return the breath that I have just exhaled? You have been doing so for my past 67 years." To which God said, "No, my Arbayah, not this time. Your fight is over. I am proud of you. It is time to come home. To Me."
THE LONGEST GOODBYE. The instance of physical death is only one moment in time. But the spiritual passing of our beloved shall always be an endless horizon of moments. And to the furthest vista that my soul can see, my mother is still passing through me and my life. My mother's end is the longest goodbye for me. It makes me a little sad, to be honest with you. But it also makes me calm and contented as this rose which men call death slowly bloom one petal after another. Each petal a step towards understanding better the delicacy of God's love and the gravity of His Most Incredible concern for our spirit. So the longest goodbye for my mother is also my longest hello to God.
POOR OMAR. But I account for nothing, sunshine. I am simply an average sinner, and even this love I profess for my mother is nothing compared to the love the Companions of the Prophet had for him. When the Prophet also said farewell to his mortal coil those long years ago, the rumours spread like wildfire through Medina until it reached the ears of Umar the Magnificent Character. To put it mildly, dear Umar found it very difficult to believe the sad news. And how I do pity him in that moment... this Companion who would later become the 3rd Rightly Guided Caliph of all Islam.
MANY YEARS EARLIER IN MECCA. It is surely ironic and a fitting tale to recall that on the day Omar became the staunchest follower of Muhammad, he was actually on his way to kill the Prophet of God. "Trouble-maker!" Omar fumed, and thinking "I will rid Mecca of this pestilence once and for all!". How changed he was since that day. Love does that to people, you know. It changes you.
Today is sabbath, sunshine. Remember the Prophet and his beloved Omar. And remember our mothers too, always.