This is the story of my life and its not a happy one. If you wish to read
about me youre welcome to but if youre looking for something to give you hope
& joy comfort & inspiration then you had best leave off here straightaway and go
find something else. My life has an abundance of frustration and pain plus a
fair bit of sex and lots of killing and broken bones but its got precious
little hope & joy comfort & inspiration.
Its got some women in it too plus a wife. Dalila is the one you may have
heard of and a rare piece of work she was. You may think you know the story but
believe me theres more.
Its an interesting question why anyone would seek hope & joy comfort &
inspiration in a story in the first place. Something to think about. Maybe
because theres precious little of it in life so we gather up as much as we can
find and put it in our stories where we know where it is and it cant get out.
But this story as I say isnt like that. It starts and ends with me here in
chains and in between if anything it gets worse. Betrayal adultery and murder
all figure in words writ large as if in fire against the nighttime sky. With the
story not even done yet it might get more hopeless still before my days in this
world are over.
In fact Im sure it will.
To give an idea of the killing: I once left a wedding feast to go kill thirty
men and then went back to the wedding which flowed on like wine unabated. This
in response to a riddle and a wager. So you see Im not joking when I say that
murder is writ large in my life in words like fire against the nighttime sky.
The thirty mens coats I removed from their stiffening bodies and then
distributed to the wedding guests. Though normally prohibited from handling the
bodies of the dead I was under some duress and consoled myself with thinking
that they were so freshly killed that they were in fact not completely done with
living as yet. Thus do we strike little bargains with ourselves and chip away at
our integrity in the process.
The wedding where this took place was my own. Perhaps it conveys some idea of
the nature of my in-laws that they took these new garments willingly enough and
wore them happily afterward notwithstanding the rips bloodstains and other marks
I said this story begins in chains and so it does for I am in chains as I
speak. They are iron and heavy and each link is the size of my hand and the
thickness of my wrist. Mighty they are and in my prime they would have not held
me but Im no longer in my prime. As you might have guessed. The place of my
enshacklement is a temple wondrously large which Ive seen little of besides
this sumptuous entertainment hall and the cells underground. In part this is
because of the sorry state of my eyesight which is failing by the day. But Ive
seen enough to know that this hall alone is bigger than some villages Ive
walked through. At one end of it is a little platform like an altar or a stage
and upon this platform I stand. Towering columns ring this hall: the largest
being a pair at the far end and a second mighty pair behind me at the rear of
the altar. So too is the looming statue of Dagonthe Philistines so-called god
which I will speak more of later. In the middle of the hall an enormous bonfire
roars at all hours in a pit. I stand strung up at the edge of the altar with my
arms spread in a T shape. My legs are free to wander but alas theres nowhere
for them to go. I spend my day shifting from one foot to the other trying to
relieve the ache and for the most part failing.
Chains stretch from the shackles on my wrists to bolts driven into the
columns. Maybe forty cubits in each direction. The bolts are as thick as a man
and the columns couldnt be encircled even by ten men with their arms spread
wideand even these arent as momentous as the columns at each end of the hall.
Truly the palace is built on a scale beyond the understanding of simple men such
as myself. I would say it is the work of the gods but that would be a blasphemy
most foul as there is only One True God and I know that well. The difference
between my people and the Philistines that surround me is that our God is the
LORD of Abraham and Moses and Josue while the gods of the heretics are made of
wood and they burn or stone and they sink or animal parts and they molder away
over time. They are dull lifeless inanimate things. Dagon is the god of this
temple and an imaginary creature nothing more. Half man half fish and pure
nonsense as even a child could tell you but what can you expect from people who
came swarming in their multitudes to Canaan in boats from across the sea?
Research shows that 90% of Americans value public libraries(Dec 11 2013) According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, about 90% of Americans aged 16 and older said that the closing of their local public library would have an...