But now those that are younger than I have me in derision, whose fathers I would have disdained to have set with the dogs of my flock.
For, unto what might the strength of their hands profit me, in whom time was lost?
For want and famine they walked alone; fleeing into solitude, to the dark place, desolate and waste.
Who cut up mallows among the bushes and juniper roots for their food.
They were driven forth from among men (they cried after them as after a thief).
They dwelt in the clifts of the valleys, in caves of the earth, and in the rocks.
Among the bushes they brayed; under the nettles they were gathered together.
They were sons of fools and men without names; they were lower than the earth.
And now I am their song, and I am their byword.
They abhor me, they distance themselves from me, and do not spare to spit in my face.
Because God has loosed my cord and afflicted me, they have also gone out of control before my face.
Upon my right hand rise the youth; they push away my feet, and they raise up against me the ways of their destruction.
They cast down my path, they took advantage of my calamity, against them there was no helper.
They came in as through a wide breach; they were stirred up because of my calamity.
They have loosed terrors upon me; they fought my will as the wind and my saving health as a cloud that passes.
And now my soul is poured out upon me; the days of affliction have taken hold upon me.
My bones pierce me in the night, and my sinews take no rest.
By the great force of my disease my garment is changed; it binds me about as the collar of my coat.
He has cast me into the mire, and I have become like dust and ashes.
I cry unto thee, and thou dost not hear me; I present myself, and thou regardest me not.
Thou art become cruel to me; with the strength of thy hand thou dost hate me.
Thou didst lift me up and cause me to ride upon the wind, and didst dissolve my being.
For I know that thou dost conduct me unto death and to the house appointed for all living.
But he will not stretch out his hand against the grave; do those who are buried cry out when he destroys them?
Did I not weep for the one that was in trouble? Was not my soul grieved for the needy?
When I expected good, then evil came unto me; and when I waited for light, there came darkness.
My bowels boil and do not rest; the days of affliction came upon me.
I went about darkened, but not by the sun; I stood up and cried out in the congregation.
I have become a brother to dragons and a companion to owls.
My skin is black upon me, and my bones are burned with heat.
My harp is turned to mourning, and my organ into the voice of those that weep.