Song of Solomon

I came across a few lines on a film today, and I did a quick research. The beautiful verses I heard belonged to what is widely accepted as a book of the Hewbrew Bible. It has since been through various intepretations, like all texts and literature, being read as an allegory of God’s love for the children of Israel, as an allegory of the relationship between Christ and the Church, and as a representation of eros (erotic love) and agape (self donating love), ie. the two halves of true love, giving and receiving. It’s content is also believed to be used heavily in Sufi poetry. While I belong to no religious group that inteprets this text at a metaphysical level, I am human and I am woman, and I felt very deeply reading this song. It had greater effect when it was being read out slowly, but there is just something in there which tugs at my heart and makes me long. It is lengthy, no doubt, but it is truly, truly beautiful. I have edited some bits out and placed the ones which truly move me. Read it slowly, and interpret it the way you want to, and imagine the moments.

The song of songs, which is Solomon’s.

Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth: for thy love is better than wine.
I have compared thee, O my love, to a company of horses in Pharaoh’s chariots.
A bundle of myrrh is my well-beloved unto me; he shall lie all night betwixt my breasts.
My beloved is unto me as a cluster of camphire in the vineyards of Engedi. Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves’ eyes.
Behold, thou art fair, my beloved, yea, pleasant: also our bed is green.
I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys.
As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste. He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.
Stay me with flagons, comfort me with apples: for I am sick of love.
His left hand is under my head, and his right hand doth embrace me.
I charge you, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, by the roes, and by the hinds of the field, that ye stir not up, nor awake my love, till he please.

My beloved is mine, and I am his: he feedeth among the lilies.
By night on my bed I sought him whom my soul loveth: I sought him, but I found him not.
I will rise now, and go about the city in the streets, and in the broad ways I will seek him whom my soul loveth: I sought him, but I found him not.
The watchmen that go about the city found me: to whom I said, Saw ye him whom my soul loveth?
It was but a little that I passed from them, but I found him whom my soul loveth: I held him, and would not let him go, until I had brought him into my mother’s house, and into the chamber of her that conceived me.

Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves’ eyes within thy locks: thy hair is as a flock of goats, that appear from mount Gilead.
Thy teeth are like a flock of sheep that are even shorn, which came up from the washing; whereof every one bear twins, and none is barren among them.
Thy lips are like a thread of scarlet, and thy speech is comely: thy temples are like a piece of a pomegranate within thy locks.
Thy neck is like the tower of David builded for an armoury, whereon there hang a thousand bucklers, all shields of mighty men.
Thy two breasts are like two young roes that are twins, which feed among the lilies.
Thou art all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee.
How much better is thy love than wine! and the smell of thine ointments than all spices!
Thy lips, O my spouse, drop as the honeycomb: honey and milk are under thy tongue; and the smell of thy garments is like the smell of Lebanon.

I rose up to open to my beloved; and my hands dropped with myrrh, and my fingers with sweet smelling myrrh, upon the handles of the lock.
Thy navel is like a round goblet, which wanteth not liquor: thy belly is like an heap of wheat set about with lilies.
Thy two breasts are like two young roes that are twins.
Thy neck is as a tower of ivory; thine eyes like the fishpools in Heshbon, by the gate of Bathrabbim: thy nose is as the tower of Lebanon which looketh toward Damascus.
Thine head upon thee is like Carmel, and the hair of thine head like purple; the king is held in the galleries.

How fair and how pleasant art thou, O love, for delights!
This thy stature is like to a palm tree, and thy breasts to clusters of grapes.
I said, I will go up to the palm tree, I will take hold of the boughs thereof: now also thy breasts shall be as clusters of the vine, and the smell of thy nose like apples;
And the roof of thy mouth like the best wine for my beloved, that goeth down sweetly, causing the lips of those that are asleep to speak.

I am my beloved’s, and his desire is toward me.
Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame.
Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it: if a man would give all the substance of his house for love, it would utterly be contemned.

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