1 Man certainly has an appointed amount of time upon earth, and his days are like the days of a hireling. 2 As a slave earnestly desires the shade and as a hireling waits for rest from his work, 3 so I am made to possess months of vanity, and wearisome nights are appointed to me. 4 When I lie down, I say, When shall I arise? I measure the night, and I am full of tossings to and fro unto the dawning of the day. 5 My flesh is clothed with worms and clods of dust; my skin is broken and abominable.
6 My days are swifter than a weaver's shuttle and are spent without hope. 7 Remember thou that my life is wind and that my eyes shall not return to see good. 8 The eyes of those that see me now shall not see me again; thine eyes shall be upon me, and I will cease to be. 9 As the cloud is consumed and vanishes away, so he that goes down to Sheol, who shall not come up again; 10 he shall return no more to his house; neither shall his place know him any more.
11 Therefore, I will not refrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul. 12 Am I a sea, or a dragon, that thou settest a watch over me? 13 When I say, My bed shall comfort me, my couch shall ease my complaint; 14 then thou dost scare me with dreams and terrify me with visions. 15 And my soul thought it better to be strangled and desired death more than my bones. 16 I loathed life; I do not desire to live for ever; let me alone; for my days are vanity.
17 What is man that thou should magnify him and that thou should set thine heart upon him 18 and that thou should visit him every morning and try him every moment? 19 For how long wilt thou not depart from me, nor let me alone until I swallow down my spittle? 20 If I have sinned, what shall I do unto thee, O thou preserver of men? Why hast thou set me as a mark against thee, so that I am a burden to myself? 21 And why dost thou not take away my rebellion and pass over my iniquity? For now I shall sleep in the dust; and if thou shalt seek me in the morning, I shall not be found.