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Russian Sailors

I took a 3 mile swim across Waikiki
wore my new tyr goggles
rob wore tyr trunks

I swam in the soothing salt
water and watched the dim gray
fish as they scurried

I walked back along the

I actually wasn't self-
conscious of my paunch
I guess 3 miles of free-
style make me feel a little

I arrived and my father
stood where I had left my
slippers, my t-shirt, my fob,
and my keys

95 sailors

he was smoking what looked
to be a joint

two men stood to either side

"they're Russian, this
is a Russian cigarette."

they were wearing
ball huggers (we
called them that
in high school)

they had a bottle of vodka in
their duffle

they had a hi-8 in their

they offered us cigarettes,
sweet tasting strong filterless

They offered us shots of
cheap Russian vodka
in little Hawaiian shot
glasses which read:
almost empty=girl

they where both
engineers in the
engine compartment
of a tuna boat out of
vladivostok (sp)

they made $200/$150
per month

they spoke no English save
5-6 words

I new nastrovia
I knew da
I knew nyet
c'est tout

they knew German,
I knew french

I didn't get us any closer

danke bitter
ya da nyet 9


Strong men
and they were bearish
although they weren't
but I have never considered
a bear tall, just big and strong.

Robert had a mouth full of gold
the other man had a name
a could not pronounce
they told us the word
for merci/danke
and de rien/bitter

but I forgot.

We had to leave-- bob to meat a lover
and me to call my gal who spent
merry merry merry merry
with her familial clique
in Connecticut (they love
to sail there-- I hated it)

sizzle sizzle
is that pork on the pan?

©1995 Chris Abraham