1. Job spoke next. He said:
2. If only my misery could be weighed, and all my ills be put together on the scales!
3. But they outweigh the sands of the seas: what wonder then if my words are wild?
4. The arrows of Shaddai stick fast in me, my spirit absorbs their poison, God's terrors stand paraded against me.
5. Does a wild donkey bray when it has grass, or an ox low when its fodder is within reach?
6. Is not food insipid, eaten without salt, is there any taste in egg-white?
7. But the very things my appetite revolts at are now my diet in sickness.
8. Will no one hear my prayer, will not God himself grant my hope?
9. May it please God to crush me, to give his hand free play and do away with me!
10. This thought, at least, would give me comfort (a thrill of joy in unrelenting pain), that I never rebelled against the Holy One's decrees.
11. But have I the strength to go on waiting? And why be patient, when doomed to such an end?
12. Is mine the strength of stone, is my flesh made of bronze?
13. Can I support myself on nothing? Has not all help deserted me?
14. Refuse faithful love to your neighbour and you forsake the fear of Shaddai.
15. Like the torrent, my brothers have proved deceptive, as fleeting torrents they flow:
16. the ice makes their waters turgid when, above them, the snow melts,
17. but, come the burning summer, they run dry, they vanish in the heat of the sun.
18. Caravans leave the trail to find them, go deep into wastelands, and are lost.
19. The caravans of Tema look to them, and on them Sheba's convoys build their hopes.
20. Their trust brings only embarrassment, they reach them only to be thwarted.
21. And this is how you now treat me, terrified at the sight of me, you take fright.
22. Have I said to you, 'Give me something, make some present for me at your own cost,
23. snatch me from the grasp of an oppressor, ransom me from the grip of a violent man'?
24. Put me right, and I shall say no more; show me where I have been at fault.
25. Fair comment can be borne without resentment, but what are your strictures aimed at?
26. Do you think mere words deserve censure, desperate speech that the wind blows away?
27. Soon you will be haggling over the price of an orphan, and selling your friend at bargain price!
28. Come, I beg you, look at me: man to man, I shall not lie.
29. Relent then, no harm is done; relent then, since I am upright.
30. Is evil to be found on my lips? Can I not recognise misfortune when I taste it?