Where Is He?
Upon my bed at night I longed for him,
the one with whom the best does not compare.
I went to look outside, while light was dim
and searched out all the streets and every square.
The watchmen met me as they made their rounds.
I asked them if they’d seen my dearest love.
No sooner had I asked them than I found
the one to whom I am a precious dove.
O daughters of Jerusalem, hear well:
Be careful when you rouse love and its fires.
I charge you by the doe and the gazelle:
Stir not up love until it so desires.
I ran to him and held him very close
until I brought him to my mother’s house.
The Happy Lovers, Gustave Courbet, 1844