I was dangled as a snare for David.
But I did not care: my whole heart raced.
His voice was wind over water over stone,
his fingers on the harp like light on gold.
Then I was bartered for blood. My bride price--
a load of foreskins hacked from the fallen--
and counted out before king and court.
On my wedding night, we had little time,
our house surrounded by carrion crows,
the hooded watchers of my father’s will.
Like a hurled stone, David’s body fell
on me; and quick and sweet was the taking.
His life was mine. So I sent him packing
into the night, and lay down with lies.
Note: 100 foreskins was the bride price set by
King Saul for David to win the hand of his
daughter Michal. The king’s scheme was to
lure the former goatherd into combat against
overwhelming odds. But David killed 200
uncircumcised Philistines and paid a double bride
price for dreamy Michal. The lovesick bride
helped David escape her father’s wrath by
lowering her husband from a window and placing
a goat-haired idol in their bed. See 1 Samuel 19
Dan MacIsaac’s poetry has appeared in many literary magazines, including The South Carolina Review, Stand, The Malahat Review, and The American Journal of Poetry. Brick Books published his collection of poetry, Cries from the Ark. His poetry has received awards including the Foley Prize from America Magazine. Dan MacIsaac’s work has been short-listed for the Walrus Poetry Prize and the CBC Short Story Prize. His website is www.danmacisaac.com.