Tuesday, June 6, 2017

The Quran and the London Bridge Massacre (Jay Smith and Hatun Tash)



Therefore when you meet those who are kafir strike their necks. Then when you have decimated them, tie their bonds tightly and set them free or ransom them, until the war is finally over. That is how it is to be. If Allah willed, He could avenge Himself on them. But it is so that He can test some of you by means of others. As for those who fight in the Way of Allah, He will not let their actions go astray. - Quran 47:4 - Aisha Bewley translation

Arm yourselves against them with all the firepower and cavalry you can muster, to terrify the enemies of Allah and your enemies, and others besides them whom you do not know. Allah knows them. Anything you spend in the Way of Allah will be repaid to you in full. You will not be wronged. - - Quran 8:60 - Aisha Bewley translation

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The Clubdate Singer Speaks! Chapter 1: Plantation Life



Disclaimer: The following story is an actual event, as all of the vignettes in the 'Clubdate Singer Speaks' series are. For 8 years, I was a member of one of the top Orchestras in the nation. Though it was an enjoyable time, it was also at times, quite painful. I took to writing initially to assuage my distress, and this is one of those times when the pen (or keyboard) proved to be a healing tool. I have considered publishing this series, and would appreciate your thoughts...

Chapter 1: “Plantatation life”  - New York City 2001


The old black man in the starched white jacket stands in the cold washroom, towel neatly folded in and by gnarled arthritic hands.
The young white man stands at the sink, washing his hands, appreciating his image in the mirror.

Self-consciously, I fumble with my zipper, as I listen to the exchange between the old man and the young man.

False pleasantries and polite ‘sir’s ring off the white tiles. hitting my ears like jagged shards of broken glass. I am disgusted, yet fascinated.

The towel and the dollar change places. Transaction complete, an uncomfortable silence replaces the uncomfortable conversation.

It is not Mississippi 1957, it is New York City 2001.

I am upset, angry, embarrassed, and not sure why.
I shiver slightly from the cold, (or is it the cold sweat that has beaded on my head) and step towards the sink.

I make eye contact with the old man in the mirror and nod.

Turning towards him, I begin to feel bad because I have no money, and there is no paper towel dispenser, or hand dryer. I reach for, and take the towel extended towards me by the gnarled hand. Embarrassed, I mumble thanks.

I think that it is embarrassment that initially focuses me on the hand. It is old, bent, and I know it must be painful in this cold cold washroom. The old man turns from me, and begins to straighten out the sundry items on the counter, then reaches slowly into the neatly starched white jacket pocket and….
PULLS OUT A ROLL THE SIZE OF MY FIST!

Instantly everything is put in a different context for me, and I stride out of the washroom head high, knowing that he’s doing ok on his plantation, and I head downstairs to mine.