Hadirah walks silently from the lecture room. Her hearts suddenly feels warm after listening to Dr. Umar’s teachings. Dr. Umar is an expert in Islamic Literature. He masters all the Islamic poetry. His words of poetry are as sweet as candy. Hadirah adores Dr. Umar.
As she is walking along the corridor, she can hear other students are chatting among themselves. At first she wants to ignore them but when she hears Dr. Umar’s name is mentioned, she stops.
“Hey, I don’t understand why we must study all these Islamic poetry and poets? We already have William Shakespeare, right. Who is Omar Khayyam compared to the William Shakespeare? I am sure that Omar Khayyam was no one. Dr. Umar likes to exaggerate in explaining about those poets,” Jauza smiles sarcastically.
“Jauza, I found a nice sonnet from Shakespeare’s collection. Let me recite it out loud,” Maria says excitedly.
“Go ahead, darling.”
“My love is strengthened, though more weak in seeming;
I love not less, though the show appear;
That love is merchandized, whose rich esteeming,
The owner’s tongue doth publish every where.
Our love was new, and then but in the spring,
When I was wont to greet it with my lays;
As Philpmel in summer’s front doth sing,
And stops his pipe in growth of riper days:
Not that the summer is less pleasant now
That when her mournful hymns did hush the night,
But that wild music burthens every bough,
And sweets grown common lose their dear delight.
Therefore like her, I sometime hold my tongue:
Because I would not dull you with my song.”
Maria recites the sonnet with full of expression. She closes her eyes and her hands are moving as if she is singing. Jauza laughs happily.
“This is what we called poetry! Forget Omar who?” says Jauza loudly. Maria and Jauza laugh together.
Hadirah walks slowly towards the two flowers.
“Assalamualaikum. Hello Jauza, Maria. I am Hadira from Dr. Umar’s class."
Jauza and Maria look at each other and look back at Hadirah.
“I don’t want to disturb both of you. It is just I feel like I have to say something after hearing all those things you said just now. It is understandable that most people know who William Shakespeare is and only a few know Omar Khayyam. But the real poetry is our Al-Quran. Allah has given us beautiful poetry in a form of a book. Do you still remember about the Quraysh tribe who tried to create a poem entitle ‘The Frog’? They created it to challenge with the Surah Al-Fil. Did they manage to create as beautiful as the Holy Quran? Nope. They failed miserably. Even Omar Khayyam could not challenge Allah’s beautiful words. But he is a Muslim poet and a very good one. How can we as Muslim condemn our own sahabah? Think again. William Shakespeare was the best of all? Think again.”
Hadira walks away. Jauza and Maria look at each other again.
Silence is in the air.
“Come, fill the Cup, and in the fire of Spring
Your Winter-garment of Repentance fling:
The Bird of Time has but a little way
To flutter – and the Bird is on the Wing.”