A tragedy unparalleled
Reminiscent of a holocaust,
Karbala* as its locus,
Several centuries in the past
Death with dignity is better
Than a life of humiliation
Advocated the central protagonist to defend
Tenets of Islam against annihilation
Commemoration of the battle every year,
In essence and fervour never could fade,
Fighting against tyranny, injustice, and falsehood
Lives for a cause Prophet’s clan laid
Homage, millions of pilgrims
Like a personal loss, do pay
Recreating pain that infuses humanitarianism,
A reminder to stand steadfast for values, come what may.
Mourning congregations, battle discourses from the pulpit,
Elegies for the martyred souls rent the air.
While chest-beating and self-flagellation form an expression of grief
The Milieu seems plunged into despair beyond compare.
The love for Imam Hussain(a.s)* is
not confined to any single community
His indestructible soul rules the hearts
Of all those who believe in humanity.
* Karbala is a city in central Iraq located about 100 km southwest of Baghdad.
* Imam Hussain(a.s) is the grandson of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. He was killed and beheaded in the Battle of Karbala.