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Young Man

I have entered my garden, my treasure,[a] my bride!
    I gather myrrh with my spices
and eat honeycomb with my honey.
    I drink wine with my milk.

Young Women of Jerusalem

Oh, lover and beloved, eat and drink!
    Yes, drink deeply of your love!

Young Woman

I slept, but my heart was awake,
    when I heard my lover knocking and calling:
“Open to me, my treasure, my darling,
    my dove, my perfect one.
My head is drenched with dew,
    my hair with the dampness of the night.”

But I responded,
“I have taken off my robe.
    Should I get dressed again?
I have washed my feet.
    Should I get them soiled?”

My lover tried to unlatch the door,
    and my heart thrilled within me.
I jumped up to open the door for my love,
    and my hands dripped with perfume.
My fingers dripped with lovely myrrh
    as I pulled back the bolt.
I opened to my lover,
    but he was gone!
    My heart sank.
I searched for him
    but could not find him anywhere.
I called to him,
    but there was no reply.
The night watchmen found me
    as they made their rounds.
They beat and bruised me
    and stripped off my veil,
    those watchmen on the walls.

Make this promise, O women of Jerusalem—
    If you find my lover,
    tell him I am weak with love.

Young Women of Jerusalem

Why is your lover better than all others,
    O woman of rare beauty?
What makes your lover so special
    that we must promise this?

Young Woman

10 My lover is dark and dazzling,
    better than ten thousand others!
11 His head is finest gold,
    his wavy hair is black as a raven.
12 His eyes sparkle like doves
    beside springs of water;
they are set like jewels
    washed in milk.
13 His cheeks are like gardens of spices
    giving off fragrance.
His lips are like lilies,
    perfumed with myrrh.
14 His arms are like rounded bars of gold,
    set with beryl.
His body is like bright ivory,
    glowing with lapis lazuli.
15 His legs are like marble pillars
    set in sockets of finest gold.
His posture is stately,
    like the noble cedars of Lebanon.
16 His mouth is sweetness itself;
    he is desirable in every way.
Such, O women of Jerusalem,
    is my lover, my friend.

Young Women of Jerusalem

Where has your lover gone,
    O woman of rare beauty?
Which way did he turn
    so we can help you find him?

Young Woman

My lover has gone down to his garden,
    to his spice beds,
to browse in the gardens
    and gather the lilies.
I am my lover’s, and my lover is mine.
    He browses among the lilies.

Young Man

You are beautiful, my darling,
    like the lovely city of Tirzah.
Yes, as beautiful as Jerusalem,
    as majestic as an army with billowing banners.
Turn your eyes away,
    for they overpower me.
Your hair falls in waves,
    like a flock of goats winding down the slopes of Gilead.
Your teeth are as white as sheep
    that are freshly washed.
Your smile is flawless,
    each tooth matched with its twin.[b]
Your cheeks are like rosy pomegranates
    behind your veil.

Even among sixty queens
    and eighty concubines
    and countless young women,
I would still choose my dove, my perfect one—
    the favorite of her mother,
    dearly loved by the one who bore her.
The young women see her and praise her;
    even queens and royal concubines sing her praises:
10 “Who is this, arising like the dawn,
    as fair as the moon,
as bright as the sun,
    as majestic as an army with billowing banners?”

Young Woman

11 I went down to the grove of walnut trees
    and out to the valley to see the new spring growth,
to see whether the grapevines had budded
    or the pomegranates were in bloom.
12 Before I realized it,
    my strong desires had taken me to the chariot of a noble man.[c]

Young Women of Jerusalem

13 [d]Return, return to us, O maid of Shulam.
    Come back, come back, that we may see you again.

Young Man

Why do you stare at this young woman of Shulam,
    as she moves so gracefully between two lines of dancers?[e]

Footnotes

  1. 5:1 Hebrew my sister; also in 5:2.
  2. 6:6 Hebrew Not one is missing; each has a twin.
  3. 6:12 Or to the royal chariots of my people, or to the chariots of Amminadab. The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain.
  4. 6:13a Verse 6:13 is numbered 7:1 in Hebrew text.
  5. 6:13b Or as you would at the movements of two armies? or as you would at the dance of Mahanaim? The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain.

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