2 “[b]May he kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine. 3 “Your oils have a pleasing fragrance, Your name is like[c]purified oil; Therefore the [d]maidens love you. 4 “Draw me after you and let us run together! The king has brought me into his chambers.”
“[e]We will rejoice in you and be glad; We will [f]extol your love more than wine. Rightly do they love you.”
5 “[g]I am black but lovely, O daughters of Jerusalem, Like the tents of Kedar, Like the curtains of Solomon. 6 “Do not stare at me because I am [h]swarthy, For the sun has burned me. My mother’s sons were angry with me; They made me caretaker of the vineyards, But I have not taken care of my own vineyard. 7 “Tell me, O you whom my soul loves, Where do you pasture your flock, Where do you make itlie down at noon? For why should I be like one who [i]veils herself Beside the flocks of your companions?”
Solomon, the Lover, Speaks
8 “[j]If you yourself do not know, Most beautiful among women, Go forth on the trail of the flock And pasture your young goats By the tents of the shepherds.
9 “[k]To me, my darling, you are like My mare among the chariots of Pharaoh. 10 “Your cheeks are lovely with ornaments, Your neck with strings of beads.”
11 “[l]We will make for you ornaments of gold With beads of silver.”
12 “[m]While the king was at his [n]table, My [o]perfume gave forth its fragrance. 13 “My beloved is to me a pouch of myrrh Which lies all night between my breasts. 14 “My beloved is to me a cluster of henna blossoms In the vineyards of Engedi.”
15 “[p][q]How beautiful you are, my darling, [r]How beautiful you are! Your eyes are like doves.”
16 “[s][t]How handsome you are, my beloved, And so pleasant! Indeed, our couch is luxuriant! 17 “The beams of our houses are cedars, Our rafters, [u]cypresses.
The Bride’s Admiration
2 “[v]I am the [w]rose of Sharon, The lily of the valleys.”
2 “[x]Like a lily among the thorns, So is my darling among the [y]maidens.”
3 “[z]Like an [aa]apple tree among the trees of the forest, So is my beloved among the [ab]young men. In his shade I took great delight and sat down, And his fruit was sweet to my [ac]taste. 4 “He has brought me to his[ad]banquet hall, And his banner over me is love. 5 “Sustain me with raisin cakes, Refresh me with [ae]apples, Because I am lovesick. 6 “Let his left hand be under my head And his right hand embrace me.”
7 “[af]I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, By the gazelles or by the hinds of the field, That you do not arouse or awaken my love Until [ag]she pleases.”
8 “[ah]Listen! My beloved! Behold, he is coming, Climbing on the mountains, Leaping on the hills! 9 “My beloved is like a gazelle or a young [ai]stag. Behold, he is standing behind our wall, He is looking through the windows, He is peering through the lattice.
10 “My beloved responded and said to me, ‘Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, And come along. 11 ‘For behold, the winter is past, The rain is over and gone. 12 ‘The flowers have already appeared in the land; The time has arrived for [aj]pruning the vines, And the voice of the turtledove has been heard in our land. 13 ‘The fig tree has ripened its figs, And the vines in blossom have given forth their fragrance. Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, And come along!’”
14 “[ak]O my dove, in the clefts of the [al]rock, In the secret place of the steep [am]pathway, Let me see your [an]form, Let me hear your voice; For your voice is sweet, And your [ao]form is lovely.”
15 “[ap]Catch the foxes for us, The [aq]little foxes that are ruining the vineyards, While our vineyards are in blossom.”
16 “[ar]My beloved is mine, and I am his; He pastures his flock among the lilies. 17 “Until [as]the cool of the day when the shadows flee away, Turn, my beloved, and be like a gazelle Or a young stag on the mountains of [at]Bether.”
The Bride’s Troubled Dream
3 “[au]On my bed night after night I sought him Whom my soul loves; I sought him but did not find him. 2 ‘[av]I must arise now and [aw]go about the city; In the streets and in the squares [ax]I must seek him whom my soul loves.’ I sought him but did not find him. 3 “The watchmen who make the rounds in the city found me, And I said, ‘Have you seen him whom my soul loves?’ 4 “Scarcely had I [ay]left them When I found him whom my soul loves; I held on to him and would not let him go Until I had brought him to my mother’s house, And into the room of her who conceived me.”
5 “[az]I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, By the gazelles or by the hinds of the field, That you will not arouse or awaken my love Until [ba]she pleases.”
Solomon’s Wedding Day
6 “[bb][bc]What is this coming up from the wilderness Like columns of smoke, Perfumed with myrrh and frankincense, With all scented powders of the merchant? 7 “Behold, it is the traveling couch of Solomon; Sixty mighty men around it, Of the mighty men of Israel. 8 “All of them are wielders of the sword, Expert in war; Each man has his sword at his side, Guarding against the [bd]terrors of the night. 9 “King Solomon has made for himself a sedan chair From the timber of Lebanon. 10 “He made its posts of silver, Its [be]back of gold And its seat of purple fabric, With its interior lovingly fitted out By the daughters of Jerusalem. 11 “Go forth, O daughters of Zion, And gaze on King Solomon with the [bf]crown With which his mother has crowned him On the day of his wedding, And on the day of his gladness of heart.”
Solomon’s Love Expressed
4 “[bg][bh]How beautiful you are, my darling, [bi]How beautiful you are! Your eyes are like doves behind your veil; Your hair is like a flock of goats That have descended from Mount Gilead. 2 “Your teeth are like a flock of newly shorn ewes Which have come up from their washing, All of which bear twins, And not one among them has [bj]lost her young. 3 “Your lips are like a scarlet thread, And your mouth is lovely. Your temples are like a slice of a pomegranate Behind your veil. 4 “Your neck is like the tower of David, Built [bk]with rows of stones On which are hung a thousand shields, All the round shields of the mighty men. 5 “Your two breasts are like two fawns, Twins of a gazelle Which feed among the lilies. 6 “Until [bl]the cool of the day When the shadows flee away, I will go my way to the mountain of myrrh And to the hill of frankincense.
7 “You are altogether beautiful, my darling, And there is no blemish in you. 8 “Come with me from Lebanon, mybride, May you come with me from Lebanon. [bm]Journey down from the summit of Amana, From the summit of Senir and Hermon, From the dens of lions, From the mountains of leopards. 9 “You have made my heart beat faster, my sister, my bride; You have made my heart beat faster with a single glance of your eyes, With a single strand of your necklace. 10 “How beautiful is your love, my sister, my bride! How much better is your love than wine, And the fragrance of your oils Than all kinds of [bn]spices! 11 “Your lips, my bride, drip honey; Honey and milk are under your tongue, And the fragrance of your garments is like the fragrance of Lebanon. 12 “A garden locked is my sister, my bride, A [bo]rock garden locked, a spring sealed up. 13 “Your shoots are an [bp]orchard of pomegranates With choice fruits, henna with nard plants, 14 Nard and saffron, calamus and cinnamon, With all the trees of frankincense, Myrrh and aloes, along with all the finest [bq]spices. 15 “You are a garden spring, A well of [br]fresh water, And streams flowing from Lebanon.”
16 “[bs]Awake, O north wind, And come, wind of the south; Make my garden breathe out fragrance, Let its [bt]spices [bu]be wafted abroad. May my beloved come into his garden And eat its choice fruits!”
The Torment of Separation
5 “[bv]I have come into my garden, my sister, my bride; I have gathered my myrrh along with my balsam. I have eaten my honeycomb [bw]and my honey; I have drunk my wine [bx]and my milk. Eat, friends; Drink and [by]imbibe deeply, O lovers.”
2 “[bz]I was asleep but my heart was awake. A voice! My beloved was knocking: ‘Open to me, my sister, my darling, My dove, my perfect one! For my head is [ca]drenched with dew, My locks with the [cb]damp of the night.’ 3 “I have taken off my dress, How can I put it on again? I have washed my feet, How can I dirty them again? 4 “My beloved extended his hand through the opening, And my [cc]feelings were aroused for him. 5 “I arose to open to my beloved; And my hands dripped with myrrh, And my fingers with [cd]liquid myrrh, On the handles of the bolt. 6 “I opened to my beloved, But my beloved had turned away and had gone! My [ce]heart went out to him as he spoke. I searched for him but I did not find him; I called him but he did not answer me. 7 “The watchmen who make the rounds in the city found me, They struck me and wounded me; The guardsmen of the walls took away my shawl from me. 8 “I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, If you find my beloved, As to what you will tell him: For I am lovesick.”
9 “[cf][cg]What kind of beloved is your beloved, O most beautiful among women? [ch]What kind of beloved is your beloved, That thus you adjure us?”
Admiration by the Bride
10 “[ci]My beloved is dazzling and ruddy, [cj]Outstanding among ten thousand. 11 “His head is like gold, pure gold; His locks are like clusters of dates And black as a raven. 12 “His eyes are like doves Beside streams of water, Bathed in milk, And[ck]reposed in theirsetting. 13 “His cheeks are like a bed of balsam, Banks of sweet-scented herbs; His lips are lilies Dripping with liquid myrrh. 14 “His hands are rods of gold Set with beryl; His abdomen is carved ivory Inlaid with [cl]sapphires. 15 “His legs are pillars of alabaster Set on pedestals of pure gold; His appearance is like Lebanon Choice as the cedars. 16 “His [cm]mouth is full of sweetness. And he is wholly desirable. This is my beloved and this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.”
Mutual Delight in Each Other
6 “[cn]Where has your beloved gone, O most beautiful among women? Where has your beloved turned, That we may seek him with you?”
2 “[co]My beloved has gone down to his garden, To the beds of balsam, To pasture his flock in the gardens And gather lilies. 3 “I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine, He who pastures his flock among the lilies.”
4 “[cp]You are as beautiful as Tirzah, my darling, As lovely as Jerusalem, As awesome as [cq]an army with banners. 5 “Turn your eyes away from me, For they have confused me; Your hair is like a flock of goats That have descended from Gilead. 6 “Your teeth are like a flock of ewes Which have come up from their washing, All of which bear twins, And not one among them has [cr]lost her young. 7 “Your temples are like a slice of a pomegranate Behind your veil. 8 “There are sixty queens and eighty concubines, And [cs]maidens without number; 9 Butmy dove, my perfect one, is [ct]unique: She is her mother’s [cu]only daughter; She is the pure child of the one who bore her. The [cv]maidens saw her and called her blessed, The queens and the concubines also, and they praised her, saying,
10 ‘Who is this that [cw]grows like the dawn, As beautiful as the full moon, As pure as the sun, As awesome as [cx]an army with banners?’ 11 “I went down to the orchard of nut trees To see the blossoms of the valley, To see whether the vine had budded Or the pomegranates had bloomed. 12 “Before I was aware, my soul set me Over the chariots of [cy]my noble people.”
13 “[cz][da]Come back, come back, O Shulammite; Come back, come back, that we may gaze at you!”
“[db]Why should you gaze at the Shulammite, As at the dance of [dc]the two companies?
Admiration by the Bridegroom
7 “[dd]How beautiful are your [de]feet in sandals, O [df]prince’s daughter! The curves of your hips are like [dg]jewels, The work of the hands of an artist. 2 “Your navel is like a round goblet Which never lacks mixed wine; Your belly is like a heap of wheat Fenced about with lilies. 3 “Your two breasts are like two fawns, Twins of a gazelle. 4 “Your neck is like a tower of ivory, Your eyes like the pools in Heshbon By the gate of Bath-rabbim; Your nose is like the tower of Lebanon, Which faces toward Damascus. 5 “Your head [dh]crowns you like Carmel, And the flowing locks of your head are like purple threads; The king is captivated by your tresses. 6 “How beautiful and how delightful you are, [di]My love, with all your charms! 7 “[dj]Your stature is like a palm tree, And your breasts are like its clusters. 8 “I said, ‘I will climb the palm tree, I will take hold of its fruit stalks.’ Oh, may your breasts be like clusters of the vine, And the fragrance of your [dk]breath like [dl]apples, 9 And your [dm]mouth like the best wine!”
“[dn]It goes down smoothly for my beloved, Flowing gently through the lips of those who fall asleep.
The Union of Love
10 “I am my beloved’s, And his desire is for me. 11 “Come, my beloved, let us go out into the [do]country, Let us spend the night in the villages. 12 “Let us rise early and go to the vineyards; Let us see whether the vine has budded And its blossoms have opened, And whether the pomegranates have bloomed. There I will give you my love. 13 “The mandrakes have given forth fragrance; And over our doors are all choice fruits, Both new and old, Which I have saved up for you, my beloved.
The Lovers Speak
8 “Oh that you were like a brother to me Who nursed at my mother’s breasts. If I found you outdoors, I would kiss you; No one would despise me, either. 2 “I would lead you andbring you Into the house of my mother, who used to instruct me; I would give you spiced wine to drink from the juice of my pomegranates. 3 “Let his left hand be under my head And his right hand embrace me.”
4 “[dp]I want you to swear, O daughters of Jerusalem, [dq]Do not arouse or awaken my love Until [dr]she pleases.”
5 “[ds]Who is this coming up from the wilderness Leaning on her beloved?”
“[dt]Beneath the [du]apple tree I awakened you; There your mother was in labor with you, There she was in labor and gave you birth. 6 “Put me like a [dv]seal over your heart, Like a seal on your arm. For love is as strong as death, [dw]Jealousy is as severe as Sheol; Its flashes are flashes of fire, [dx]The very flame of the Lord. 7 “Many waters cannot quench love, Nor will rivers overflow it; If a man were to give all the riches of his house for love, It would be utterly despised.”
8 “[dy]We have a little sister, And she has no breasts; What shall we do for our sister On the day when she is spoken for? 9 “If she is a wall, We will build on her a battlement of silver; But if she is a door, We will barricade her with planks of cedar.”
10 “[dz]I was a wall, and my breasts were like towers; Then I became in his eyes as one who finds peace. 11 “Solomon had a vineyard at Baal-hamon; He entrusted the vineyard to caretakers. Each one was to bring a thousand shekels of silver for its fruit. 12 “My very own vineyard is [ea]at my disposal; The thousand shekels are for you, Solomon, And two hundred are for those who take care of its fruit.”
13 “[eb]O you who sit in the gardens, Mycompanions are listening for your voice— Let me hear it!”
14 “[ec][ed]Hurry, my beloved, And be like a gazelle or a young [ee]stag On the mountains of spices.”
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