Delilah lied. Delilah dissembled. Delilah had been false.
Which of these was the most egregious affront, Samson would not live to decide. But contrary to historical account, the torture of Samson by the Philistines was not the instrument of his demise. No. His fate was determined in that passing moment when ruby lips seeped poison. The same lips that had caressed his brow, enveloped his manhood, uttered vows of devotion, not so many hours before. In truth, Samson’s virility drained from him like the blood of a slaughtered lamb well before his mane was shorn and his eyes put out. Betrayal by his One True Love felled the Hero’s heart with far more cunning and precision than corporeal brutality could mete.
One reckless, intangible act. A great man. No more.
But what of Delilah? The gaping hollow in her bosom, coursing with the detritus of disgrace, that would marshal her to a very private abyss? Rogue female — cut off from family, tribe, vast humanity — her beauty to wither in solitude, her heart gripped with the crippling ache of remorse.
For she had — truly, deeply, irrevocably — loved her man. Loved him in her heart, in her soul, in her groin. Under the beds of her fingernails. In each follicle of her own hair.
She raised her hand to God and drank the poison. Just enough to wet her lips. This time.