The Dowdy Muslim – Novid Shaid

The Dowdy Muslim
By Novid Shaid, September, 2010

There once was a dowdy Muslim
whose face looked clumsy and cold.
She would waddle down the street,
looking down at her feet,
covered up in flowing dark folds.

When she trudged on through the markets
or stood in queue like a dull figurine,
the other women so dashing,
with bodies like mannequins,
considered her image obscene!

There once was a dowdy Muslim,
whom the men and women thought glum.
“If I looked so poor
I’d lock myself indoors.
She most definitely has no fun!”

This woman, she behaved so different,
wrapping her body, shying away from men.
When they peered at her dress,
they thought her oppressed:
“How old-fashioned! And so out of trend!”
There once was a dowdy Muslim,
whom the world around misunderstood.
While the people from her town
gave her disapproving frowns,
in secret she wished them nothing but good.

In the night when all were dozing,
she would rise and implore the skies.
Praying for security,
for her cruel community;
gentle tears flowing from her eyes.

There once was a dowdy Muslim
whose neighbour was particularly mean,
so offended and repulsed
by this Muslim’s impulse
to obscure herself from being seen.

This neighbour was a proud professional,
an aerobics queen, with a facelift.
She went out with a doc,
who made a living from Botox.
Every Friday they went out and got pissed!

There once was a dowdy Muslim,
whose neighbour had a startling dream.
She witnessed her own fate
and awoke in a state,
letting off an ear-splitting scream!

This neighbour dreamed she was standing
on a plain with the rest of the world.
Feeling like a silly kid,
she stood there stark naked,
but none noticed or even said a word.

But as she stood and gazed around there,
someone caught her eye, standing so tall.
Beautiful as a pearl,
surrounded by whistling angels,
more delightful than a princess at a ball.

Now the neighbour was extremely curious,
there was something so obvious and familiar.
So she left her place
from the rows of the human race;
the curiosity was nearly killing her.

When she reached this towering individual,
angels turned to her, so surprised.
They looked at her, up and down
giving her ridiculing frowns:
“Why ever have you left your line?”

“Excuse me, but do I know you?”
Gasped the neighbour, up to this glistening head.
When the figure turned it face,
the neighbour’s heart raced
and her spirit was engulfed with dread.

For the figure was no other than the Muslim;
her neighbour, the sad, dowdy one.
Now she stood with such grace
pearls and jewels beautifying her face,
as if she were a chosen one.

“Where on earth am I?” shouted the neighbour.
“Why am I here, and how come you are suddenly so fine?!”
“Truth has conquered falsehood,”
said the Muslim as she stood,
“inner beauty wins at the end of time.”

Then the angels encircled and gambolled
with the Muslim, around and around.
Quick and gentle little sprites,
weaving circles of light
Singing: “she’s the best in town!”

“The best!” Woosh!! Woosh!!
“The best”, Woosh!! Woosh!!
“The best in town!”
With a dance and a giggle
And waddle and wiggle,
The holy angels sang: “The best in town!!!”

So, there once was a dowdy Muslim,
whom her people cackled:  “What a complete clown!”
But little did they know
of her deep, inner glow
as the hidden voices sang: “The best in town!!!”

“She’s the best!” Woosh!! Woosh!!
“The best!” Woosh!! Woosh!!
“The best in town!”
With a dance and a giggle
And a waddle and a wiggle,
the holy angels sang: “The best in town!”