With a Heavy Heart: Story 7 in ‘Hearts We Lost’ series

“Say [O Muhammad to the people] ‘If you love Allah, follow me. Allah will love you and forgive your sins. For Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.’” —Qur’an, Ali Imraan (3:31) Sharif sat quietly on the carpeted floor of his living room, having completed Asr prayer minutes before. The conversation with Hasna returned to him, this time in his heart instead of his …

In His Father’s Shadow: Story 6 in ‘Hearts We Lost’ series

“Iman!” Mona stood at the bottom of the carpeted steps leading to the girls’ rooms. It was Tuesday morning and she had just returned from the store. After Mona had unloaded the car, paper bags of groceries lined the kitchen table and floor, and she was exhausted. She had been up most of the night talking to her sister on …

The Woman in His Dream: Story 5 in ‘Hearts We Lost’ series

“No,” Hasna had said flatly to Sharif’s inquiry to determine if she was willing to consider wearing hijab after marriage. That night, it was this one response that kept playing over in Sharif’s mind, precluding any likelihood of sleep although his body was desperately in need of rest.   He couldn’t help noticing the uncanny parallels it held to the response …

His Family and Faith: Story 4 in ‘Hearts We Lost’ series

“Are you a scholar?”  Asma grinned at Sharif from where she sat across from him at the dining room table Sunday morning, a forkful of eggs poised midair as she eagerly awaited his answer.  She looked younger than she had the day before at the airport when the white cloth framed her face.  Her hair was now uncovered to reveal …

Hasna, His Love: Story 3 in ‘Hearts We Lost’ series

The dark maroon vertical blinds covering the glass door danced gently when Vernon pulled the handle. He stepped back, releasing Hasna momentarily to let her inside before him. Instantly, Hasna relaxed in the intoxicating sound of Marvin Gaye singing “Mercy Mercy Me.” Minutes later, Hasna sat across from her best friend at a private booth, the back of Hasna’s chair …

Finally Home: Story 2 in ‘Hearts We Lost’ series

Sharif had first heard of Yasmin through Hisham, a close friend of one of his instructors who had heard about him and invited him over for dinner nearly two years after Sharif began studying at the Islamic university. Eager to meet a Muslim brother from the region, especially the friend of a favored professor, Sharif accepted the invitation, and the …

Hearts We Lost: Short Story 1

“This world in comparison to the Hereafter is as if one of you were to put his finger in the ocean. Consider how much you would have when you pulled it out.” —Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him (Muslim) SHARIF  If I were to look back at my life and pinpoint a single event, a single moment that set everything …