The Imam’s Beloved Daughter Most Reveled Sakina (‘a)
(" Bevon kaa mulke Shaam mein jis dum guzar hua" )
When in Shaam the caravan of widows arrived
In embarrassment they bowed their heads and cried
Seeing the spectators lined up on the streets
Tears of humiliation filled their eyes
Having trailed through the roads, shops and streets
The Queens reached the court of the infamous Yazid
There Yazid conversed with Abid at length
Hearing Abid's responses, the attendees wept
Disgraced, Yazid brought the confrontation to a close
Enraged at Sajjad's character and strength
while all spectators went back to their homes
To prison the kin of the Prophet went on
In the dark prison, they sat heads bowed
Frightened of the darkness, Sakina looked around
So exhausted was Abid from His journeys on foot
He dropped to the floor without a sound
Many nights He had stayed up, many miles He had walked
He slept now, resting His ahead on the wall
"why is it so dark" Sakina wanted to know
"What place is this mother, where no air flows?
The darkness is smothering, I can't see a thing
Not the earth beneath or the sky above"
"We cannot stay here, no one will survive
Won't lamps be lit when evening arrives?"
"If it stays this dark, I will certainly not last
I'm convinced that this night will not pass
My Father would cradle me on his chest at night
Now sleep on the dirt? I cannot alas"
"If a lamp blew out, I'd wake with a start
Have I ever, Oh Mother, slept in the dark"
Her mother replied, wiping Sakina's tears
"Hush my little one, lest the guards hear
Morning will come soon, the dark will be gone
The moon will illumine this place my dear"
"The breeze will flow, the night will cool down
I'll hold you in my arms, rest Oh little one"
Thus the mother consoled, cajoled and calmed
The girl was restless, the night stretched on
Sakina sobbed and wept through the night
Weary she curled up in her mother's arms
Her frail body weak and drowsy, she slept
And Banu held Sakina in her arms and wept
Within moments Sakina was restless again
She dreamt of her Father, His presence she felt
Stretching wide her arms, she woke with a start
And peered in the darkness, her eyes seeking Him
She cried "Oh Mother, not a thing I can see
My Father was here, tell me where is Hue"
Everyone wept at Sakina's state
And so did the prison guard, hiding his face
And Yazid learned of Sakina's distress
That she's crying for her Father, for Him she prays
Inconsolable she weeps, nothing calms her down
She wants her Father, she wants Him now
"Then take His head" Yazid ordered his men
And Husain's severed head was carried thence
Its glory and radiance lighting the path
Fragrant and glorious Its noble presence
Sensing the approach, the prisoners hastily rose
impatiently Sakina waited by the door
Anxious to see Him, smiling through her tears
The air grew fragrant as His head drew near
With His halo the prison aura transformed
Gone with the gloom was Sakina's fear
In reception the prisoners lined up at the door
in respect and salutation Abid arose
To receive her Father, Sakina held out her dress
And hugged His head close to her chest
She kissed His forehead, His cheeks, His lips
The prisoners circled her in awe and respect
Where Zainab stood hair strewn, head bare
Husain's glance was affixed to her face
Holding her Father's severed head
Sakina sat on the floor and said
Words of love, of her loss, her pain
Then unconscious she was, close to death
Her face resting on her Father's face
She sighed, shuddered and took her last breath
Her silence at first gave no one alarm
For everyone thought she was feeling calm
But as the silence stretched, the mother said
"Wake up dear Sakina, pass the head to you Aunt"
Hearing no response, terror filled Banu’s heart
"She's fainted" said everyone, "Banu take heart"
Banu lifted Sakina into her arms
Saw the lifeless limbs, eyes shut, face calm
Neck limp, face drooping to her chest, not a sound
"what is this?" She cried, "What is this now?"
"What healer do I consult, where do I go?
The prison door is locked my dear, what do I do?"
She fanned Sakina's chest, lifting her shirt
"Pray my lady," she turned to Zainab and urged
She called out for Abid to come to her aid
"Come here my Son, Your sister won't stir"
"I'm trying to rouse her, I see no response
She's passed out I gather, but her breathing has stopped"
Feeling her pulse Abid moaned and tensed
And the mother cried "I have no more strength"
"Yet I'll face the truth, do not hide from me Son"
Abid replied "Dear mother, she is dead"
"Lay her down on the sand, let her rest
Her body is bruised, yet she's peaceful in death"
"In this dark prison my daughter is dead"
Banu cried "This death I will never forget"
And Fizza went to the prison door and asked
The guards for a lamp for the house of the dead
"No one keeps a body laying so in the dark
Yet our little girl lies in the prison night black"
With the light of dawn, the prison was lit
And Banu bent over Sakina and looked
Saw the bruised ears, dried blood on her neck
Her dress blood‑stained, tattered and burnt
Pale and gaunt, resting on the prison floor
Hair laden with dust, crying no more
"My dearest" She cried, "Wake up now
Its time for Namaz (Salat), your head you must bow
"You've never needed my help to wake up before
You'd wake on your own, what's happened now?"
"You know the guards' fury, do not so doze
This isn't home Sakina, they'll come to the door"
"The darkness troubled you, you couldn't rest
You'd pray for a breeze, you'd get upset
The breeze from heaven gill cool you tonight
in your new home Sakina my dear, sleep well"
"I hope you find comforts you couldn't find here
The grave is roomier than this prison my dear"