The Arena (The desert of Kerbala, Iraq)
A sweltering, simmering, broiling land
Igneous, sultry, arid sand.
No bramble (or thistle) it boasts
A crop of humpbacked dunes it hosts
A torrid, baking, seething place
Even delusion, cannot verdure trace.
Exhausted earth's infecund plot
Anhydrous, husky, soapless, spot.
Parched fragment of a barren world
A glowing meteor to the earth hurled.
No cheerless, forlorn cactus grows
Hellish, blustering simoom blows.
The blazing, fiery, flaming sun
An eerie desolation; the valiant shun.
A spooky silence, ominous hush
The wind escapes it, with a rush.
The terra firma appears ablaze
The earth stunned, in a languid daze.
A vision, on earth, of a virtual hell
A stretch of furnace, a fiery shell
The heatwave diffuses thermal haze
The fervid ether forbids the gaze.
The primeval sands primordial heat
With contempt does inferno treat
Behold a dauntless, valiant band
Stands, resolutely, on this land.
The Profit's grandson; with his group
A tranquil Guild, not a militant troop.
In this sombre, dreary terrain
They, their reverence did sustain.
Omar bin Sa'ad, the commander of the enemy's army came with 30,000 of troops. He made Amr bin al-Hajjaj az-Zubaidi the commander of the right flank of his army and Shimr bin Thil al-Jawshan the commander of the left flank. Izra bin Qais Al-Ahnasi was made the commander of the horsemen, Shibth bin Ribi'e took charge of the archers.
"Suddenly a deafening tumult I heard,
Thundering of myriad hooves, converged.
A tremor struck, the earth did shake,
My tranquillity disrupted, I was awake.
Loomed, ominously, a host of swords,
Rush, headlong, did furious hordes.
The glint of tinsel arms appeared,
As their coursers they spurred.
My waves, in terror, rushed, did flee
As their identity dawned on me.
Their sinister countenance, hideous looks,
Depicted a pack of depraved crooks.
Their obliquity; their visage betrayed,
A flash flood hit me (was dismayed)
Adapted from the book: "Tale of Hussain's Martyrdom" translated by: "Najim al-Khafaji"
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