1878.) Song of Solomon 7

Please don’t imagine the metaphors literally!

Song of Solomon 7   (NIV)

He

1 How beautiful your sandaled feet,
O prince’s daughter!
Your graceful legs are like jewels,
the work of an artist’s hands.
2 Your navel is a rounded goblet
that never lacks blended wine.
Your waist is a mound of wheat
encircled by lilies.
3 Your breasts are like two fawns,
like twin fawns of a gazelle.
4 Your neck is like an ivory tower.
Your eyes are the pools of Heshbon
by the gate of Bath Rabbim.
Your nose is like the tower of Lebanon
looking toward Damascus.
5 Your head crowns you like Mount Carmel.
Your hair is like royal tapestry;
the king is held captive by its tresses.
6 How beautiful you are and how pleasing,
my love, with your delights!
7 Your stature is like that of the palm,
and your breasts like clusters of fruit.
8 I said, “I will climb the palm tree;
I will take hold of its fruit.”
May your breasts be like clusters of grapes on the vine,
the fragrance of your breath like apples,
9 and your mouth like the best wine.

She

May the wine go straight to my beloved,
flowing gently over lips and teeth.
10 I belong to my beloved,
and his desire is for me.

LOVE IS . . . exchange of selves.

Something extremely simple yet incredibly mysterious is said in Song of Songs 2:16 and again at 7:10:  “My beloved is mine and I am his.” Love exchanges selves. When I love you, I no longer possess myself; you do. I have given it away. But I possess your self. How can this be? How can the gift of the giver be the very giver? How can the hand that gives hold itself in itself as its own gift? The ordinary relationship between giver and gift, subject and object, is overcome here. The simple-sounding truism that in love you give your very self to your beloved is a high and holy mystery.

Its ultimate explanation is an even higher and holier mystery, the Trinity itself. Lovers belong to each other because love is the nature of God, and the Persons in the Divine Trinity give themselves to each other. The Son is the very Word, or thought or mind of the Father given so totally that he is another Person; and the Spirit is the very love between Father and Son given so totally that he too eternally becomes a third Person.

The image of this ultimate Fact in human love is that lovers can really give themselves to each other, so that “the two become one” without ceasing to be two. 

–from Three Philosophies of Life, by Peter Kreeft

11 Come, my beloved, let us go to the countryside,
let us spend the night in the villages.
12 Let us go early to the vineyards
to see if the vines have budded,
if their blossoms have opened,
and if the pomegranates are in bloom—
there I will give you my love.

LOVE IS . . . alive.

All the images for love in this poem, as in most love poems, are images of living, growing things:  a garden (Song 4:12, 16), a vineyard (Song 7:12, 8:11-12), a well of living water (Song 4:15). Love grows like a plant.  t does not merely grow in us, with us, as a function of us; we grow in it, with it, as a function of it. It has a life of its own — ultimately because it is a seed of God planted in our lives. “He who lives in love, lives in God, and God in him” (1 John 4:16).

–from Three Philosophies of Life, by Peter Kreeft

13 The mandrakes send out their fragrance,
and at our door is every delicacy,
both new and old,
that I have stored up for you, my beloved.

cowslips

Sonnet XI
by Edna St. Vincent Millay

Not in a silver casket cool with pearls
Or rich with red corundum or with blue
Locked, and the key withheld, as other girls
Have given their loves, I give my love to you.
Not in a lovers’-knot, not in a ring
Worked in such fashion and the legend plain-
Semper fidelis,
where a secret spring

Kennels a drop of mischief for the brain:
Love in the open hand, no thing but that,
Ungemmed, unhidden, wishing not to hurt,
As one should bring you cowslips in a hat
Swung from the hand, or apples in her skirt,
I bring you, calling out as children do:
“Look what I have! – And these are all for you.”

_________________________

Music:

HERE  Celine Dion sings “The Power of Love,” which I think is a pretty good match for the Song we have been reading!

The whispers in the morning
Of lovers sleeping tight
Are rolling like thunder now
As I look in your eyes
I hold on to your body
And feel each move you make
Your voice is warm and tender
A love that I could not forsake

‘Cause I am your lady
And you are my man
Whenever you reach for me
I’ll do all that I can

Lost is how I’m feeling, lying in your arms
When the world outside’s too
Much to take
That all ends when I’m with you
Even though there may be times
It seems I’m far away
Never wonder where I am
‘Cause I am always by your side

We’re heading for something
Somewhere I’ve never been
Sometimes I am frightened
But I’m ready to learn
Of the power of love
The sound of your heart beating
Made it clear suddenly
The feeling that I can’t go on
Is light years away

_________________________

New International Version (NIV)   Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
literal metaphors.  https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/songsolomon.jpg
cowslips.   http://kokoskisclasses.weebly.com/uploads/9/5/6/2/9562752/3504863_orig.jpg
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