1 Has not man his ordered time of trouble on the earth? and are not his days like the days of a servant working for payment?
2 As a servant desiring the shades of evening, and a workman looking for his payment:
3 So I have for my heritage months of pain to no purpose, and nights of weariness are given to me.
4 When I go to my bed, I say, When will it be time to get up? but the night is long, and I am turning from side to side till morning light.
5 My flesh is covered with worms and dust; my skin gets hard and then is cracked again.
6 My days go quicker than the cloth-worker's thread, and come to an end without hope.
7 O, keep in mind that my life is wind: my eye will never again see good.
8 The eye of him who sees me will see me no longer: your eyes will be looking for me, but I will be gone.
9 A cloud comes to an end and is gone; so he who goes down into the underworld comes not up again.
10 He will not come back to his house, and his place will have no more knowledge of him.
11 So I will not keep my mouth shut; I will let the words come from it in the pain of my spirit, my soul will make a bitter outcry.
12 Am I a sea, or a sea-beast, that you put a watch over me?
13 When I say, In my bed I will have comfort, there I will get rest from my disease;
14 Then you send dreams to me, and visions of fear;
15 So that a hard death seems better to my soul than my pains.
16 I have no desire for life, I would not be living for ever! Keep away from me, for my days are as a breath.
17 What is man, that you have made him great, and that your attention is fixed on him,
18 And that your hand is on him every morning, and that you are testing him every minute?
19 How long will it be before your eyes are turned away from me, so that I may have a minute's breathing-space?
20 If I have done wrong, what have I done to you, O keeper of men? why have you made me a mark for your blows, so that I am a weariness to myself?
21 And why do you not take away my sin, and let my wrongdoing be ended? for now I go down to the dust, and you will be searching for me with care, but I will be gone.