The king is speaking thru a window’s lattice separated from the Egyptian mademoiselle by a wall (9). Twice he commands her, “Arise, come, my darling; my beautiful one, come with me.” She remains hidden behind a dark wall, in the clefts of the rock, in the hiding place where shadows rule (14). Embarrassment is holding her captive. She heeds not his commands though he states, “Your face is lovely.” (14)
The king’s plead to his beloved continues. He calls her his dove; equating her to a brilliant white-feathered, pure, and holy gentlewoman. “Show me your face, let me hear your voice.” Why does she not answer? Why doesn’t she obey? He knows why. Her self-doubt shames her. She is embarrassed by her complexion. She cannot show her master a sun-weathered face. She cannot answer her lord.
Will the king of the land abandon his hope? Will the people’s master flee into the arms of another? Is this the end of the Egyptian sonnet? Will he seek the face and voice of another princess? Will he prance into another field of lilies?
The king trumpets an order, “Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom.” (15)
The brothers of the maiden, the foxes that steal will suffer for their cruelty. They forced his lover into the fields. They kept her toiling in the vineyard through mid-day sweltering heat. When they oppressed her, they oppressed “us”. The king is committed to protecting his “us”. Harm her, they harm him, they oppress “us”.
The Beloved is moved by her commander’s loyalty. He has not given up on her, on them. Her lover is hers and she is his (16). They are committed though the “little foxes” remain (but not much longer). She imagines the king browsing in her field of lilies (16). All night he is with her imagination. She desires her young stag to traverse her rugged hills.
Her lover is like the morning sun. His presence moves the darkness away. Even the shadows flee when his love enters (17).
“The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever; he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. ” (Psalm 103:8–10) “The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.” (Psalm145:8–9).
“Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not overcome it.” (John 1:3–5) “And God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.” (Genesis 1:3–5)