When Dawn brushed the early sky with rose
Odysseus' son bound on his beautiful sandals
And hefted his spear. He was in a hurry
To get to the city, and he said to his swineherd:
"I'm off to the town, Eumaeus. My mother
5Won't stop crying until she sees me again, In person. But this is what I want you to do.
Take this down-and-out stranger into the city
So that he can beg for food. Whoever wants to
Can give him some bread and a cup of water.
10There's no way I can worry about everyone, I have too much on my mind. If the stranger
Gets upset about this, it's just too bad.
I'm the sort of person who likes to talk straight."
And Odysseus, his mind teeming, said: 15
"Friend, don't think I'm eager myself
To be left behind here. For a beggar like me,
It's better to beg for food in the town
Than out in the fields, and whoever wants to
Can give me something. I'm past the age
20Where I can stay on a farm and have to do Everything some foreman tells me.
You go on. This man here will lead me to town
As soon as I have warmed myself by the fire
And the sun is higher. These clothes I'm wearing
25Are not so good, and the morning frost