The Struggle of the Patient

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Life is an unpaved road
and enormous like an elephant 
and I am 
wandering in it with invisible crutches
under my jaded branches

One crutch is scintillating, 
a shaft of 
inexhaustible hope – 
‎إِنَّ اللّهَ مَعَ الصَّابِرِينَ
(Indeed, God is with those who are patient.)

And what am I 
if not a blob of congealed blood
refusing to whine about my 

The other crutch is profound,
a rod too arduous
to clench –
‎فَبِأَيِّ آلَاءِ رَبِّكُمَا تُكَذِّبَانِ
(So which of the favors of your Lord will you deny?)

And what am I 
if not a boulder instead of a heart
refusing to count my myriad of blessings?

I have learned 
while perusing the books of knowledge 
by righteous luminaries:

Being patient 
cannot be likened 
to being grateful 

For I have survived 
hurricanes of ailments 
without grumbling 

Yet failed to acknowledge 
other gifts bestowed upon me 
at that tumultuous time

This conscientious soul 
awaits a morning

when this timid beauty
can hold 
both the crutches 

with a wide smile 
like a jewel 
on her visage
and sweetly whisper, 
” الحمد لله على كل حال “
(All praise and thanks are only for God in all circumstances.)


O you who have believed, seek help through patience and prayer. Indeed, Allah is with the patient.

– Surah Baqarah 

The Prophet ﷺ said: “Allah is pleased with His servant if, when he eats something, he thanks Allah for it, and when he drinks something, he thanks Allah for it.” (Muslim)

Afra Ahmad is a writer, poet, artist and calligrapher. Based in Saudi Arabia, she holds a Bachelor's degree in English Literature. She writes about everything under the sun: from dark issues of society to problems faced by teenagers to imparting chunks of wisdom through her poems, spiritual stories and write-ups. Her works have appeared in various journals and magazines including Blue Minaret, Melbourne Culture Corner, Iman collective, Muslim Youth Musings, Rather Quiet, Broken Spine Magazine.


  1. This is amazing. I really like that you pointed out that it’s important to be grateful even while we are patient for our trials.

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