The Garbi was whipping up the waves. we were bending, the two of us, over the map; you turned and said to me that by March you would have entered different latitudes.
On your chest [there is] a coolie's tattoo, that, however much you burn it, does not think of disappearing. They say that you have loved her [once] during an attack of black fever.
On watch beside a bald headland and the Southern Cross [overhead] among the spars. You clutch a Komboloi made of coral and tirelessly chew bitter coffee beans.
Alpha Centauri, one night with the astrolabe , I pulled it down. you spoke to me in a deathly voice beware the stars of the South
Sometime, once, under that same sky you spent three months in a row with the captain's half-caste [woman] [taking] every night a lesson in steering a true course.
In a trade post in Nossi Bé you pulled out two shillings for that knife, one day, at noon, on the Line, [when it was] flashing like a lit-up lighthouse
Down there on the shores of Africa The years pass by now that you are asleep The beacons, you don't remember them no longer, nor the lovely Sunday sweet