The Trial of al-HallajThe votes are in, the die is cast
As orthodoxy stands aghast.
The molders of the ummah’s mind
Reflexively profess to find
In ‘Ana’l-Haqq’ – I am the Truth –
An imprint of the devil’s hoof.
While learned elders slip away
to stroke their grizzled beards and pray,
The torturer receives his brief:
To break all bones, if not belief.
And thus is moral outrage bent
Once more to murderous intent.
First published in Music in the Air.