In an age of anti-Muslim hysteria a brave Muslim woman who gave her life for our country was remembered this week with the unveiling of a statue in Bloomsbury. After working as an agent for the Special Operations Executive she was arrested and shot at Dachau after withstanding months of torture and giving away no secrets.
NOOR INAYAT KHAN
By sunset on the second day
your Holy Book prescribes burial.
Mourners shall come in white.
Killers dressed in black denied
you burial. You are severed from
the earth, without a grave, your
life implied by things,
by photographs, by dresses
in a dark oak wardrobe
uniform jacket and skirt,
the smell of mothballs, a clock
that ticks in blacked out London
as it ticked in the spring
on the day you last walked in,
last hung up your jacket
and ticked away your absence
as it ticked for you at
sunset on the second day.
Copyright Peter Bateman 2011