The few wispy clouds reflect pale orange as the sun lay just below horizon. The sky over the city was gray and the buildings, still black silhouettes, were scattered with yellow lantern-brightened windows.
Fine silks drape him from the waist down as he lay on his side gazing out the door leading to his bedroom terrace. A wife, snoring softly, lay next him, naked, having no doubt kicked the covering off during the typically warm night.
Reflecting on the past few days he wondered if the pressure and constant expectations would end. Would they ever end? Last week he actually ordered a child killed! Unbelievable. What if no one called his bluff? What if the child had died? Could he live with that?
Quietly sliding from his bed, he padded to the doorway and continued to watch the sun rise. The blackness faded from the buildings as they began to shine with their reddish sandstone hue, enhanced by the new sun. Between the buildings the damp stone paved street reflected the early dawn, resembling embers in a fading fire. Few were out this early, bakers and merchants mostly, their shadows silently slipping behind them as they passed through the openings between buildings.
Longingly he gazed at his writing table, unused for years now. In his youth, he loved sitting at that table just after sunrise writing his songs. Why did his brother, Adonijah, not come to him and tell him he desired to be king, instead of claiming the throne without even telling father? Then they both could be content, his brother ruling the kingdom and he writing poetry, alone in his room. It was that dream in Gibeon that sealed his fate. When, in the dream, God asked him what he wanted he replied “If I must rule, please provide me the wisdom to rule justly.”
Wisdom, bah! Is that what it is called? Wisdom to decide, wisdom to choose, wisdom to judge day after day. If he were wise before the dream he would have asked for the ability to rhyme silver or orange. Instead he has no time to write anymore. Now he only has time for meetings and to rule his country justly and with compassion. And they call that wisdom? Now I have 700 wives!! And they call that wisdom? Bah!