Peace - happiness, but strife our existence
Under the skies1. That grim prince of darkness
And the world's enticing vanities press
Forcefully to bring on our decadence.
This is not all, O our mighty Ruler!
Our house-this body, for fleeting delight2,
Heedlessly envying the spirit its might,
Will not cease striving to fall for ever.
What shall I do in battle so frightful,
Weak, heedless, also divided in two?
O universal King, peace most faithful,
The hope of my salvation is in You!
Put me by Your side, and I will safely
Engage in struggle and win it bravely!
Translated by Michael J. Mikoś
1 The first sentence is a paraphrase of the Book of Job (7:1-6), a classic description of the hard life that mortals are subject to, beginning with: "Do not human beings have a hard service on earth, and are not their days like the days of a laborer?" 2 Another reading of this line: "Our house - this body of fleeting desires."