I am the youngest in a family of six children. My eldest brother. Ali, was
almost twenty-three when tragedy struck suddenly to deprive our family of a
filial son and loving brother.
I came home from school that day, cheerful
because I had won the top prize in a school mathematics competition. When I
reached home, I knew immediately that something was wrong. Many of my relatives
were at my house and the looks on their faces showed sadness.
I quickly rushed
into the house and met my sister, Salmah, who blurted out to me that Ali was
dead. "He was knocked down by a car while crossing the road to his office," she
said, "and was killed on the spot." I felt as if someone had pulled the carpet
from under my feet, and for a second I felt dizzy. Then the realization of the
loss set in and I was overcome with sorrow.
I could hear my mother and sisters
wailing loudly inside the room. I knew that Ali's body lay there but I could not
bring myself to go in. I moved towards the wall and turned my back towards it.
Then, I slumped down to the floor and bowed y head low between my upright knees.
I felt someone touch my shoulder and looked up to see my father standing over
me. His eyes were red and the skin around his eyes looked puffy. He told me that
it was time for the funeral.
Ali's body was washed according to the Islamic
custom and prayers were held. Then, we went to the Muslim cemetery at St James
Park for the burial. After, the burial and further supplication for the dead, it
finally dawned on me that I would never ever see my brother again in the flesh.
I offered a silent prayer for my brother and beseeched God Almighty to provide
ell for my brother in the Hereafter.