Nine whole days I was borne along by rough, deadly winds on the fish-infested sea.
The on the tenth our squadron reached the land of the Lotus-eaters, people who eat the lotus, mellow fruit and flower. We disembarked on the coast, drew water there and crewmen snatched a meal by the swift ships.
Once we had our fill of food and drink, I sent a detail ahead, two picked men and a third, a runner, to scout out who might live there--men like us perhaps, who live on bread? So off they went and soon enough they mingled among the natives, Lotus-eaters, Lotus-eaters who had notion of killing my companions, not at all, they simply gave them the lotus to taste instead...
Any crewmen who ate the lotus, the honey-sweet fruit, lost all desire to send a message back, much less return, their only wish to linger there with the Lotus-eaters, grazing on lotus. All memory of the journey home dissolved forever.
But brought them back, back to the hollow ships, and streaming tears I forced them, hauled them under the rowing benches, lashed them fast and shouted out commands to my other, steady comrades.
'Quick no time to lose, embark in the racing ships!' -So none could eat the lotus, forget the voyage home. They swung aboard at once, they sat to the oars in ranks and in rhythm churned the water white with stroke on stroke.