7 “Does not a man have a term of duty on earth,
and is not his time like a hired hand’s?
2 Like a slave panting for a shadow
and a hired hand looking forward to his pay,
3 So I have been assigned moons of futility
and nights of trouble are counted off for me.
4 When I lie down I think ‘When can I get up?’
evening stretches on, and I have all I can hold of tossing till daybreak.
6 My days go faster than a shuttle
and come to an end with no sort of hope.
8 The eye of him who is seeing me will not behold me,
while your eyes are on me I am gone.
9 A cloud clears up and goes off;
just so one who goes down to the world below will never come up.
10 He will never come back to his house
and his place will not greet him again.
11 I on my part will not check my mouth,
will speak in the distress of my spirit,
will protest in the ache of my heart.
12 Am I a sea, or a sea-monster,
that you set a watch over me?
13 When I think ‘my bed will comfort me,
my couch will help carry my grievance,’
14 You dismay me with dreams
and overwhelm me with visions,
16 I will not take it; I shall not live forever;
let me be, because my days are a puff of air.
17 What is man that you should make much of him
and fix your attention on him
18 And inspect him every morning,
test him every moment?
19 How long will you never glance away from me,
not let up long enough for me to swallow my spittle?
20 I sinned; what am I doing
to you, Keeper of man?
Why do you set me as a thing in your way
and have me as a load to carry,
21 And not pardon my crime
and set my guilt aside?
For right off I shall be lying in the clay,
and you will go in quest of me and I shall not be there.”