1How lonely sits the city that was full of people! She has become like a widow, she who was great among the nations! She who was a princess among the provinces has been put to forced labor!
2She weeps, yes, weeps in the night; her tears are on her cheeks. Among all her lovers she has no one to comfort her. All her friends have betrayed her; they have become her enemies.
3Judah has gone into captivity under affliction and under great servitude; she lives among the nations; she finds no rest; all her persecutors caught up with her in the middle of the narrow places.
4The roads of Zion mourn because no one comes to the appointed feasts. All her gates are desolate. Her priests are groaning, her virgins are grieving, and she herself is bitter.
5Her adversaries have become her masters.a Her enemies are at ease, for Yahweh has caused her to grieve because of the multitude of her transgressions. Her young children have gone away as captives, driven before the enemy.
6All her splendor has departed from Daughter Zion; her leaders have become like deer that can find no pasture, so they have fled without strength before the hunter.b
7In the days of her affliction and her homelessness, Jerusalem remembers all her precious things that were hers in the days of old. When her people fell into the hand of the adversary and no one helped her, her adversaries saw her; they laughed at her downfall.
8Jerusalem has greatly sinned, therefore she has become an unclean thing. All who honored her hold her in contempt because they have seen her nakedness. Also, she herself groans and turns away in shame.
9Her uncleanness is on her skirts. She did not consider her future; she has fallen in an astonishing way; she has no comforter. O Yahweh, see my affliction for the enemy is triumphant!
10The enemy has stretched out his hands upon all her pleasant things; she has seen that the nations have entered into her sanctuary— those whom you commanded that they were not to enter into your congregation.
11All her people groan while they search for bread; they have traded their pleasant things for food in order to stay alive.c Look, Yahweh, and consider how despicable I have become.
12Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow, which has been brought upon me, which Yahweh has inflicted upon me in the day of his fierce anger.
13From on high he has sent fire into my bones and it overcame them. He has spread a net for my feet; he has turned me back; he has made me desolate, faint all day long.
14My transgressions have been formed into a yoke— they have been woven together by his hand. They have come upon my neck and it has made my strength fail. The Lord has given me into the hands of those whom I am not able to stand against.
15The Lord, who is in my midst, has tossed aside all my mighty men, he has called an assembly against me to crush my young men. The Lord has trampled Virgin Daughter Judah like grapes in a wine press.
16I weep because of these things; my eye, my eye runs down with water, because the comforter who keeps me alive is far from me. My children are destitute because the enemy has prevailed.
17Zion spreads out her hands; there is none to comfort her. Yahweh has commanded concerning Jacob that those who are around him are to be his adversaries. Jerusalem is like a menstruous woman among them.
18Yahweh is righteous, for I have rebelled against his commandment. Listen, please, all you peoples, and see my sorrow. My virgins and my young men have gone into captivity.
19I called for my lovers, but they deceived me. My priests and my elders slowly died in the city while they were searching for food for themselves in order to stay alive.
20See, Yahweh, how I am in distress! My bowels are troubled, my heart is pounding within me, for I have rebelled, yes, rebelled. Outside, the sword makes women childless, and in the house, it is like is death.
21They have heard my groaning, but there is none to comfort me. All my enemies have heard of my trouble; they are glad that you have done it. May you bring the day that you have proclaimed, so that they will be like me.
22Let all their wickedness come before you. Do to them as you have done to me because of all my transgressions. For my groans are many and my heart is faint.