Songs of Songs 1:1
This is about to get awkward. Songs of Songs is believed to have been written by Solomon. Yes, angsty teen guy. But this is not teenage fodder. Taken literally this is either a poem (or song?) between Solomon and one of his lovers (wives?), or, perhaps, a poem about a love triangle between Solomon, his intended and the shepherd whom his intended loves. Taken less literally, it can be read as a declaration of the love between God and man. I hope not. However you read it, it is… interesting, to say the least. The writing goes back and forth between two lovers (Solomon being “Lover” and the woman being “Beloved”), with “Friends” (an outside group of people) thrown in here and there. (Read as a love triangle, “Friends” would be Solomon and “Lover” the shepherd.)
Beloved: (The woman) Kiss me, handsome. You’re awesome, no wonder all of the girls have crushes on you!
Friends: Your love is awesome!
Beloved: My skin is really dark, but don’t judge me for it! My brothers made me work out in our vineyard.
Friends: You’re hot, lady.
Lover: (Solomon) “I liken you, my darling, to a mare harnessed to one of the chariots of the Pharaoh.” (I think this is a complement.) All that jewelry looks really good on you; I’ll make some more for you!
Beloved: I wear awesome perfume to draw the king in. “My lover is to me a sachet of myrrh resting between my breasts.” (No really, that’s in here, 1:13)
Lover: You are so beautiful! “Your eyes are doves.”
Beloved: You’re hot too–and charming. “And our bed is verdant.”
Lover: “The beams of our house are cedars.” (I think this is an allusion to the strength of the relationship? Maybe? Dunno.)
Beloved: I am a flower.
Lover: You are a flower, a flower amongst thorns. (The other ladies are the thorns.)
Beloved: You are “like an apple tree among the trees of the forest.” Your “fruit is sweet to my taste.” My lover cuddles me, and “I am faint with love.” He calls to me, “My beautiful one, come with me.”
Lover: You are lovely, and your voice is sweet. Chase away anything trying to ruin our love.
Beloved: “My lover is mine and I am his.” I was in my bed the other night, but my lover was not there. I searched the entire city looking for him. When I found him, I held him and would not let him go. Then I took him to my mother’s house, “to the room of the one who conceived me.” (That’s romantic.) Look, here comes Solomon, looking all kingly!
Lover: You are soooooooo hot. “Your two breasts are like two fawns, like twin fawns of a gazelle that browse among the lilies.” 4:5 (This guy knows how to sweep a lady off of her feet.) Come with me, my bride! You have stolen my heart, my sister! (Uh… figure of speech?)
Beloved: “Blow on my garden, that its fragrance may spread abroad. Let my lover come into his garden and taste its choice fruits.” (I am furiously blushing at this point.)
Lover: Oh, I did. I did all of that and more.
Friends: “Drink your fill, O lovers.”
Beloved: My lover knocks on the door. I go to open it, but he is gone. I go to look for him, but the watchmen found me. They beat and bruised me. Where is my lover?
Friends: How is your lover better than all of the others?
Beloved: Well, he’s young Brad Pitt levels of hot. And he has a good heart, that too.
Friends: Where did your lover go?
Beloved: He’s in his garden.
Lover: You are beautiful, lady. Like really beautiful. I have lots of wives, lots. But you’re the best. “The only daughter of my mother.” (Wait, what?) All praise you.
Friends: Who is this super hot person?
Lover: I was in the garden, but I realized I really wanted to get it on.
Friends: Wait, come back! You’re hot, and we want to look at you!
Lover: You are so beautiful, daughter of a prince. “You stature is like that of the palm, and your breasts like clusters of fruit, I said ‘ I will climb the palm tree; I will take hold of its fruit.'”
Beloved: “I belong to my lover, and his desire is for me…. Let us go to the countryside… there I will give you my love.” If only you were my brother, the people would not stare and condemn our pda. (Not sure if this makes me feel better or worse about the sister/brother thing.) “Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.” (This last line is repeated fairly often by Beloved.)
Friends: Who is the woman coming from the desert and leaning on her lover?
Beloved: Let’s go to where I roused you, your mother conceived you and also where she gave birth to you. (Gross) I am super jealous, and my love for you “burns like blazing fire.”
Friends: We have a young sisters whose breasts aren’t done growing. What will we do with her when she is spoken for? We will protect her.
Beloved: “I am a wall, and my breasts are like towers.” This is my vineyard, I can do with it as I will, and I want to give part of it to Solomon.
Lover: Speak up, lady! I want to hear your voice!
Beloved: Come away with me and be “like a young stag.”
So… take from that what you will. One thing that this poem makes fairly clear is that ladies should wait for their true love, not try to push it and pick the wrong one. (And they are to be protected until that happens. Families who pushed their young daughters into marriage, I’m looking at you!) It is debatable as to whether or not the poem suggests that you have to be married to “awaken love.” And however you read it, I hope that you’ll notice that the Bible seems to be promoting love and passion (as long as it is for the right person.) So take that, weird religions who try to put a damper on human passion! This is also proof that men have fixated mostly on a women’s “breasts” since forever.
Next up, we’ll be reading Isaiah for the next forever.