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My son, keep my words,
store up my commands with you.
Obey my commands, and live;
guard my teaching like the pupil of your eye.
Bind them on your fingers;
write them on the tablet of your heart.
Say to wisdom, “You are my sister”;
call understanding your kinswoman;
so that they can keep you from unknown women,
from loose women with their seductive talk.

For I was at the window of my house,
glancing out through the lattice,
when I saw among the young men there,
among those who don’t think for themselves,
a young fellow devoid of all sense.
He crosses the street near her corner
and continues on toward her house.
Dusk turns into evening,
and finally night, dark and black.
10 Then a woman approaches him,
dressed as a prostitute, wily of heart.
11 She’s the coarse, impulsive type,
whose feet don’t stay at home;
12 rather, she stalks the streets and squares,
lurking at every streetcorner.

13 She grabs him, gives him a kiss,
and, brazen-faced, she says to him,
14 “I had to offer peace sacrifices,
and I fulfilled my vows today.
15 This is why I came out to meet you,
to look for you; now I’ve found you.
16 I’ve spread quilts on my couch
made of colored Egyptian linen.
17 I’ve perfumed my bed
with myrrh, aloes and cinnamon.
18 Come on, let’s make love till morning;
we’ll enjoy making love.
19 My husband isn’t at home,
he’s gone on a long trip;
20 he took a bag of money with him
and won’t be back till the moon is full.”

21 With all her sweet talk she convinces him,
enticing him with her seductive words.
22 At once he follows her
like an ox on its way to be slaughtered;
like a fool to be punished in the stocks;
23 or like a bird rushing into a trap,
not knowing its life is at stake
till an arrow pierces its liver.

24 So now, children, listen to me;
pay attention to what I am saying.
25 Don’t let your heart turn to her ways;
don’t stray onto her paths.
26 For many are those she has struck down dead,
numerous those she has killed.
27 Her house is the way to Sh’ol;
it leads down to the halls of death.

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