Professor Falk took the world’s most beautiful, powerful and mysterious collection of ancient love poetry and made it more beautiful, more powerful and less mystifying. Her sensitive, evocative English translation honors the Song’s nonsexist expression of erotic love, usually between a man and a woman, rendered through these stanzas.
God isn’t mentioned directly, just indirectly at times through imagery inspired by the natural world. The natural world also inspired the smattering of illustrations by Moser — a bird, a horse, a leopard, a palm tree, a pomegranate bursting with fertility.
No one knows the true origins of this only book of poetry in the Bible; most likely, more than one author deserves credit. The Song of Songs can be confusing, with its shifting backdrops and voices. Falk untangles some of the confusion by using different typefaces to indicate who is speaking: Roman type for a female voice, italic for a male voice, and boldface to indicate an unidentifiable voice or a group of voices.
Part of the Brandeis Series on Jewish Women, this slim volume makes a perfect engagement gift and would be treasured by anyone who appreciates great poetry from a scholarly or an emotional perspective.
Falk was a Fulbright Scholar and Postdoctoral Fellow in Hebrew literature and Bible at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She has been a professor of English, creative writing, Hebrew literature, and Judaic studies at SUNY Binghamton and other universities.