Joel Hayward's Poetry

Islamic poetry in English

Professor Joel Hayward, ZDaF, BA, MA Hons, PhD, FRSA, FRHistS

Professor Joel Hayward is a New Zealand-born British scholar, writer and poet who has held various academic posts, including Chair of the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences at Khalifa University (UAE) and Dean of the Royal Air Force College (UK). He has earned ijazas in ʿAqīdah (theology) and Sirah (the Prophet’s biography). He is the author or editor of many books of non-fiction, particularly in the fields of history and strategic studies, including Warfare in the Qur'an (2012). He has given strategic advice to political and military leaders in several countries, has given policy advice to prominent sheikhs, and was tutor to His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales. In 2011 he was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and in 2012 he was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. In October 2016 he was named as the "Best Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences" at the 2016 Middle East Education Leadership Awards.

With a first degree in Classical Studies and his MA Hons and PhD in History, Professor Hayward is especially interested in international politics, Just War and the ethics of modern conflict. He also researches and lectures on the Islamic laws and ethics of security. He is interested in both the influence of conflict on Islam and the influence of Islam on conflict.

He is fascinated by comparative religious studies and the impact of religion on politics, and reads the scriptures of the monotheistic faiths in their original languages (Hebrew, Greek and Arabic). Also able to read Latin and speak or read several modern languages, he has undertaken extensive primary research in Russian and German archives.

Joel is also active in the literary arts. His first poetry collection, Lifeblood, appeared in 2003 to excellent reviews, and his second, Splitting the Moon: A Collection of Islamic Poetry, appeared in 2012 to equally strong praise. Poems from the Straight Path: A Book of Islamic Verse, his third major collection, appeared in 2017. In its glowing review, Passion Islam (Nov. 2017) stated:  "Hayward’s journey of exploration, transformation and illumination forms the beating heart of this moving collection of poetry [which is] a timely and important work that reveals the struggle and profound insights of someone bridging cultures and faith traditions." A fourth collection, Pain and Passing: Islamic Poems of Grief and Healing, about the tragic death of his wife Kathy, appeared in 2018. His poems have also been published in many literary journals and magazines. He has published three collections of short stories. His first, Jenny Green Teeth and other Short Stories, received praise upon its publication in 2003, with the Evening Standard, for example, writing: “"Superb. ... Deep, brooding and intense. ... This is storytelling at its best."