A P Chekov (Translated by Igor Vinogradoff)

A Sea: A Sailor’s Story


The sky was as black as ink and we could scarcely see the lights of the disappearing port. A chill, damp wind whistled, yet we felt stifled by the heavy rain clouds above us. The crew had trooped onto the lower deck to draw lots. Ribald jokes were exchanged to the accompaniment of loud, drunken laughter; someone was crowing like a cock. I was shivering. It was as if cold, small shot were pouring down my naked body.

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