Week 42 in the Jewish calendar is the last week of Tammuz, and the first of the three weeks of mourning over the destruction of the Temple. In the verse of Shir HaShirim of this week, the Jewish people call out to the other nations, adjuring them not to interfere in its relationship with G-d. It brings to mind the song of the Hound in Book 1, and how the Jewish people maintain their loyalty to G-d despite the difficulties of exile, and how G-d maintains his faithfulness to us. This is also captured in Rashi’s comment on the above verse: “Now the congregation of Israel addresses the nations, “Even though I complain and lament, my Beloved holds on to my hand, and He is my support in my exile; therefore, I adjure you.”
Of the seventy souls of the Jewish people that descended to Egypt, the forty-second mentioned is Asher. Asher means “happy.” This week is also connected to Rosh, son of Benjamin, whose name means “head,” a reference to how Joseph was Benjamin’s superior. When Mashiach comes and the Temple is rebuilt, this week will be one of happiness, one in which we will feel like a “head” and not a “tail.” Both Asher and Rosh contain the same letters, Reish and Shin, just in reverse. With the slightest of variations, these letters spell Rash, poor. These weeks tend to be difficult times as well.