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Young Woman

One night as I lay in bed, I yearned for my lover.
    I yearned for him, but he did not come.
So I said to myself, “I will get up and roam the city,
    searching in all its streets and squares.
I will search for the one I love.”
    So I searched everywhere but did not find him.
The watchmen stopped me as they made their rounds,
    and I asked, “Have you seen the one I love?”
Then scarcely had I left them
    when I found my love!
I caught and held him tightly,
    then I brought him to my mother’s house,
    into my mother’s bed, where I had been conceived.

Promise me, O women of Jerusalem,
    by the gazelles and wild deer,
    not to awaken love until the time is right.[a]

Young Women of Jerusalem

Who is this sweeping in from the wilderness
    like a cloud of smoke?
Who is it, fragrant with myrrh and frankincense
    and every kind of spice?
Look, it is Solomon’s carriage,
    surrounded by sixty heroic men,
    the best of Israel’s soldiers.
They are all skilled swordsmen,
    experienced warriors.
Each wears a sword on his thigh,
    ready to defend the king against an attack in the night.
King Solomon’s carriage is built
    of wood imported from Lebanon.
10 Its posts are silver,
    its canopy gold;
    its cushions are purple.
It was decorated with love
    by the young women of Jerusalem.

Young Woman

11 Come out to see King Solomon,
    young women of Jerusalem.[b]
He wears the crown his mother gave him on his wedding day,
    his most joyous day.

Young Man

You are beautiful, my darling,
    beautiful beyond words.
Your eyes are like doves
    behind your veil.
Your hair falls in waves,
    like a flock of goats winding down the slopes of Gilead.
Your teeth are as white as sheep,
    recently shorn and freshly washed.
Your smile is flawless,
    each tooth matched with its twin.[c]
Your lips are like scarlet ribbon;
    your mouth is inviting.
Your cheeks are like rosy pomegranates
    behind your veil.
Your neck is as beautiful as the tower of David,
    jeweled with the shields of a thousand heroes.
Your breasts are like two fawns,
    twin fawns of a gazelle grazing among the lilies.
Before the dawn breezes blow
    and the night shadows flee,
I will hurry to the mountain of myrrh
    and to the hill of frankincense.
You are altogether beautiful, my darling,
    beautiful in every way.

Come with me from Lebanon, my bride,
    come with me from Lebanon.
Come down[d] from Mount Amana,
    from the peaks of Senir and Hermon,
where the lions have their dens
    and leopards live among the hills.

You have captured my heart,
    my treasure,[e] my bride.
You hold it hostage with one glance of your eyes,
    with a single jewel of your necklace.
10 Your love delights me,
    my treasure, my bride.
Your love is better than wine,
    your perfume more fragrant than spices.
11 Your lips are as sweet as nectar, my bride.
    Honey and milk are under your tongue.
Your clothes are scented
    like the cedars of Lebanon.

12 You are my private garden, my treasure, my bride,
    a secluded spring, a hidden fountain.
13 Your thighs shelter a paradise of pomegranates
    with rare spices—
henna with nard,
14     nard and saffron,
    fragrant calamus and cinnamon,
with all the trees of frankincense, myrrh, and aloes,
    and every other lovely spice.
15 You are a garden fountain,
    a well of fresh water
    streaming down from Lebanon’s mountains.

Young Woman

16 Awake, north wind!
    Rise up, south wind!
Blow on my garden
    and spread its fragrance all around.
Come into your garden, my love;
    taste its finest fruits.


  1. 3:5 Or not to awaken love until it is ready.
  2. 3:11 Hebrew of Zion.
  3. 4:2 Hebrew Not one is missing; each has a twin.
  4. 4:8 Or Look down.
  5. 4:9 Hebrew my sister; also in 4:10, 12.

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