Saturday, 11 March 2017



My brother had a handsome boy-friend.
For ‘boy’ he was, when David came.
The war decreed my father’s life
As Israel’s sacred warrior-King.
When the boy came to fight for him
Father did not know himself.
My brother pleaded loyal worth
And David’s voice was heard to sing.

And when he sang, our souls were stirred.
Not only father loved his song.
My father offered him dear Merab,
But to Jonathon he did belong.
And so it was, he married me,
To keep him close by to my brother.
Not long to last was their connection
For life was stolen by another.

O Jonathon – gentle one –
How did die upon the field?
Defending father’s honour still?
Could you not claim a daughter’s yield?
For you should have been born the girl -
You could never take the throne!
You were to be at David’s side
The one who held his heart alone.

And so I sit in the harem,
Surrounded by collected prize.
Named as first, I hold the place
Of Queen and mother to the wise.
Many women follow me
And gather here in my domain.
And still I long for brother’s love
And grieve at war’s disputed gain.

(1 and 2 Samuel – Princess Michal was Saul’s younger daughter and sister to Jonathan and Merab. She married David, who later had many wives.)

© 2017, A.Koh-Butler

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