Poetry Sama’

We sit together, huddled closely,
Anxiously, on the front row

All eyes glued, not to you but
To the images that your words create

You lead us at a measured pace,
Over the peaks and down through the troughs.

Your carefully selected words take us from plane
To plane, each line a new sensory experience.

We wait patiently to follow your cue
To stand in front of your captured audience

And deliver our own humble efforts, Where
My words seem but weak in comparison

I’m nervous and uncomfortable, as I read
Out loud my innermost feelings, thoughts and fears

I see the occasional raised eyebrow, the occasional
Smile amongst faces deep in thought.

I read some more of my painful verse, not sure
If this is what is expected of me

The Round Robin continues through the night, one after
The other we take turns to share the eyes through which we see

The tempo rises and then falls, the mood swings round
Taking us with it on a spiritual journey.

Returning from the break, I find reassurance
In the smiling face and soft coaxing words of a friend.

The evening runs on, the audience
eagerly hold their hands out to be led away to that other world

And as we take them where we will, the half-dimmed room
hides from us their true reactions.

It is only when the evening draws to an end,
kind words from friendly strangers let us know that all is well

Tonight was truly an ecstatic exchange,
led by the master painter Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore


Many of you have asked me for the Ruba’yat from which I read at the Poetry Sama’. Please click here to download the pdf.



  1. Imran, salaama… your earnest, quitely flowing lyrics, those ruba’yats, were the needed harmonic chords to the evening. Even your reticence was in itself a kind of sama’, almost as much silence coming from you as words… Thank you for your participation, and may Allah keep you proficient in your soulful ambidexterity…

  2. Kelly Walsh Said:

    Your Audience

    As I sit with your many friends
    I realise that you also had a captured audience
    both in life and death.

    Once again we sit ‘huddled together’
    this time for us to tell our tales of you,
    And you being you, there were many to tell!

    As our bitter sweet evening runs on
    we pray insha’allah
    that you too will be taken by the hand and led away gently,
    into that other world you were so fond of taking us.

    Where once our reactions were hidden by the shadows of that evening,
    our smiles and tears in celebration of your life
    are now bathed in the light that you passed onto each and every one of us.

    It is only with the departure of those as dear as you that we realise
    the evening draws to an end for us all.

    It was truly an ecstatic exchange knowing you Imran.
    May you now live in the truest of exultation.

    On returning from Imran’s funeral I wrote this in response to his ‘Poetry Sama’, for he too had an audience. My writing in no way compares to the eloquence with which Imran wrote and spoke.

  3. sf Said:

    Dear Kelly,

    A touching tribute!
    Your poem evokes heart-felt emotions from the reader, a true sense of loss…..and couldn’t be expressed better.
    It’s a fact that Br. Imran’s audience is extended well beyond the Poetry Sama’ function, through his exemplary words, deeds and feelings of brotherhood.
    May Allah(SWT) grant him the highest station in Paradise and patience to his parents, family and friends. Ameen

  4. MUM Said:

    Inna Lilahi wa inna ilahi rajaun
    (Truly to Allah we belong and truly, to him we shall return)

    In memory of my loving son Imran Saithna (1978-2007)

    Dearest son Imran
    Your death has surely been
    A test of my Imaan( Faith).

    I thought I was strong
    I thought I could cope with the storm
    I am very weak and feeble and absolutely torn.

    Two weeks gone by
    I have stumbled and fumbled
    I have wept and wept day and night
    Unable to see any bright light.

    My heart shudders
    My tears roll
    My body aches with the pain
    For your departing soul.

    If this is Allah’s wish
    Dearest son Imran
    Then I have to bow with Submission
    For in Islam there is NO Question
    But True Acceptance.

    Your Father, Your Sister, Your Brother, your Aunt
    Your Uncles, Your Cousins
    And Family and Friends around the world
    Have cried and cried.

    But I will tell you something my dearest son
    We all, every single one
    Are full of pride

    Your life was short
    You left us in the prime of your youth
    It hurts our heart
    It’s hard to believe
    To give us any relief
    It is a fact
    There is No doubt that it is Allah’s act.

    By the age of 28
    You had touched so many lives
    In different ways
    For which Allah has witnesses.

    There were hundred’s of friends
    At your Funeral Prayer
    There were hundreds at your burial

    Your grave was sealed not by a digger
    But by the hands of hundred’s of youth
    And my Dearest Son
    So many hearts and hands praying for you.

    You were an inspiration
    Everybody says so
    How many of us would follow your contributions
    With so much of dedication.

    Who will be brave like you to go to the Earth Quake Zone?
    Who will bury parts of the bodies shattered by the stones?
    Who will see the plight of families lost all their loved ones?

    Who will go hungry and give their share of food to the alone?
    Who will work with prisoners to integrate them in society?
    Who will raise funds for mosques and organize Eid Parties?

    Who will give up their Eid Day to work with charity organisations?
    Who will hold quizzes and poetry competitions?
    Who will say that we all need to be respected
    Whether we are Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus or others.

    When you were a baby
    I called you a Gold Medalist
    Because you were the best of my three babies.

    The world did not know this my son
    But today when you are gone, they say you were a gem
    And a Shining star
    This really confirms.

    Dearest son Imran
    Now you are under ALLAH’s tender care and protection
    I pray along with all, that Allah Ar-Rahman, (Most Gracious)
    Ar-Rahim(Most Compassionate) will take care of you
    Just like you did of me on Haj.

    As He is The Most Merciful and Forgiving
    I pray that He out numbers all your good deeds and forgives your bad.
    Gives you the highest Rank in Janaat ul Firdous( Paradise)

    I also pray that Allah being As Sabur (The Patient)
    Gives us all the patience to cope with the loss of not only a son
    A brother, a friend but A GEM
    May we meet again in the Here After.Ameen
    ( Writing this poem has been very difficult ,I have shed a million tears. Nothing in comparision to Imran’s writing, just a picture of my thoughts). Let’s all pray for the Families in Iraq, Palestine and around the world that are afflicted by tragedies each day. Let’s not forget that for a mother every child’s death is like loosing her precious GEM. Just imagine for one second how many Gems gone each day.
    May Allah rest their souls in peace Ameen).
    Atiya Saithna

  5. […] who wrote to me about his experiences knowing Imran; there is Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore, with whom he shared his love for poetry. But even I, who knew him so briefly and barely, feel that I’ve lost […]

  6. stranger Said:

    i thought of you today. i never got to properly thank you for helping me out with so many things. for listening to me. for making sure i got home ok. or for the dates from saudi arabia after you came back from hajj. i remember seeing you few days before this..and when i saw you and you told me of your plans and you seemed so happy.. it’s been harding coming to terms with this. i hope you’re in a better place now. may God bless your soul. ameen.

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