By Wilaa Bhayani
On the flaming sand,
Lay a cut body, a parched throat
Desolate, between swords and spears
He lay among lifeless bloody bodies
Suckling infants, sons, nephews, brothers alike
The bloodthirsty pulled the dagger
Thru his jugular vein
The last breath, the last spill, the last cry
The earth trembled in pain
Then the sky cried blood
The poem “The Sky Cried Tears of Blood” is about the tragic historical event Karbala. The pronoun “he” refers to Imam Hussain (as) who was mercilessly killed with his family and friends for refusing to pay allegiance to Yazid, a tyrant king, in 680 AD. His family was deprived of all necessities including water for days before being killed. After ambushing and slaughtering all his male relatives (including his 6-month-old baby), Yazid’s army captured his female relatives and treated them in humiliating ways. When Imam Hussain (as) was murdered, according to historical records, there was an earthquake and the sky turned blood red. The anniversary of Imam Hussain’s (as) murder, called Ashura, is commemorated every year in the lunar month of Muharram by Shia Muslims around the world by recitation of eulogies, poems, speeches, etc.
For more information please see https://whoishussain.org/who-is-hussain/the-full-story/
Wilaa Bhayani is a 2nd year student studying Molecular Genetics, Math, and Writing at U of T St. George campus. She also works as a math & science tutor at Oxford Learning. In her free time, she enjoys reading books, discussing politics, and learning new languages.
Photo Credit: Davood Mirbagheri