It is not easy to be young at 16 I was a galley boy
on a tankship that even then 60 years ago was ancient
crewed by old mariners who spent their free time
playing cards and talking about whores and now the ship
had docked in Le Havre.
It was dark when I went ashore sat in a bar and drank
Pernod I think. I didn`t go in there had promised my mother
to stay away from alcohol and women.
Light rain and the street light was sparse like there was still
a war on, a small girl standing in the rain looking like
a sparrow with a broken wing.
We went to a mall hotel, but I didn`t have enough money
I got to keep my virginity for another day.
Walking back to the ship it was still raining and the old men
sat drinking one of them saw me and invited me in I accepted
by now I was so lonely and needed someone to talk to,
it was not like I could ring my mother from a cell phone and
anyway, we didn`t have a phone back home.
The ancient mariners carried me on board.