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CALL : +685 24414
FAX 20429
5th Floor John Williams Building
Tamaligi, Apia

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Friday 14 February
Poetry in motion

 

Read Song of Solomon 6:1–7:7 I am my beloved’s, and his desire is for me. (chapter 7, verse 10)

The man describes the maiden in his second descriptive song and here he uses military images; the maiden is ‘terrible as an army with banners’ (6:4 and 10). While we today may think that it is not appropriate to use such images to describe love, the ancients have no qualms about it. The Ancient Near-Eastern goddess of love, Ishtar, was also the goddess of war. In using a military image, the man highlights the maiden’s beauty which arouses desire but, at the same time, instils a sense of awe and fear. In verse 10, her earthly beauty is so awe-inspiring that it even surpasses the majestic heavenly hosts.

In chapter 7, the man continues to describe the maiden. Starting from her feet, he is mesmerised by her dainty feet in sandals which enhance their erotic beauty. He ends with her long flowing tresses which can entrap even kings (verse 5). She is, in every sense of the word, ‘queenly’ (verse 1). She is poetry in motion. There is nothing wrong in praising physical beauty. Beauty and sexuality are not taboo in God’s eyes. It is we humans who make things taboo. Humans are not mere souls encased in a physical body. We are total human beings with feelings – a sense of touch, a nose for scents, an eye for beauty, an ear for praises and a heart of emotions. We are beings capable of love and being loved in return.

† Lord, help us not to frown upon human sexuality but to learn to embrace and experience it with joy and thanksgiving as God’s gift to humans. Amen