Do you not see how Allah is praised by those in the heavens and those on earth?
Australian birds praise Muslims as they wing their way across Australia.
Through shadow-drifting veils of time and distance,
A faraway Hoopoe Bird – Messenger of the Way,
Called to her Southern counterpart one day
To arrange a gathering of Australian Birds
Down Under to celebrate thirty years of
Multicultural Eid Festival and Fair
And the contribution of Muslims to Australia.
Her cousin, a Spinifex Pigeon, soon replied.
’Oh Hoopoe, you call to me down the years
You who have passed over an abyss of fears,
Crossed by a bridge finer than human hairs,
… As you say, only those Birds which peck away
At their souls to know the highest love can truly
Know Tariqat. – Help us Oh Hoopoe, for on your
beak is etched the blessed word Bismillah, for all to see!
King Solomon, known as Sulaiman in the Qur’an,
Could speak to you in your warbling tones,
So you understood each other heart to heart.
You would carry messages from his court to
Belquis, Sheba’s Queen. For your courage
He honored you with a golden-feathered crest.
Now we must learn from you about your quest
Along the spiritual path seeking Simorgh the
Bird King so long ago. I too, my cousin, have a
Treasured crown, so I shall gather my country’s birds
Today from scorching deserts and sullen swamps
Of this vast forbidding land – the pounding seas,
– Relentless skies and steely trees.
With faith we shall beat our wings as one,
Flying in our hearts towards the Light,
Seeking for our darkest sins forgiveness
– With quiet resolution,’
Thus spoke the Pigeon, while calling coo-whoo
– To the Hoopoe’s budud,
Then he flew down from the unforgiving blue
– To settle near a lonely billabong.
A soft wind rippled the water as the Pigeon
– Welcomed a Willy Wagtail,
‘You always sing sweet pretty creature
– To yourself in the moonlight,
Yet like Moses on Mount Sinai, you can see the
Bush-fires burning; you know this austere land
– From shore-to-shore.
Now gather thirty birds together!
You’re vain, with your silly song so make amends.’
The Wagtail flew away to find his friends;
Soon a Crimson Rosella from Wombat Creek
Arrived, his outspread tail a gentle green below
– His body’s scarlet livery,
A halo of fiery fluff around his head.
‘A little less pride,’ the Spinifex Pigeon said
– ‘Would serve you well.’
When a Squatter Pigeon strutted towards him,
– He added, ’you too!’
Suddenly, swooping down to join his shadow
Landed a Peregrine Falcon, talons extended.
‘The sun may rise and set in you brilliant eyes
My friend, but try to grasp eternal love.
Take heed, you who have eyes and you will see
The expanding radiance of eternity….’