1 But now he has fallen on evil times, for his master is dead and gone, and the women take no care of him.
2 There are not ten suitors only, nor twice ten, but ten many times over; you shall learn their number at once.
3 At times I cry aloud for sorrow, but presently I leave off again, for crying is cold comfort and one soon tires of it.
4 Before the Achaeans went to Troy, nine times was I in command of men and ships on foreign service, and I amassed much wealth.
5 Any one who has lost his way has at all times a claim even upon the gods, wherefore in my distress I draw near to your stream, and cling to the knees of your riverhood.
6 When they reached the water side they went to the washing cisterns, through which there ran at all times enough pure water to wash any quantity of linen, no matter how dirty.
7 And Ulysses answered, "In good truth, goddess, it seems I should have come to much the same bad end in my own house as Agamemnon did, if you had not given me such timely information."
8 As he spoke he went up to Ulysses and saluted him with his right hand; "Good day to you, father stranger," said he, "you seem to be very poorly off now, but I hope you will have better times by and by."
9 I went to Cyprus, Phoenicia and the Egyptians; I went also to the Ethiopians, the Sidonians, and the Erembians, and to Libya where the lambs have horns as soon as they are born, and the sheep lamb down three times a year.
10 I am not surprised, my dear mother, at your displeasure," replied Telemachus, "I understand all about it and know when things are not as they should be, which I could not do when I was younger; I cannot, however, behave with perfect propriety at all times.