Now you might be thinking, "Aw, come on Shmoop. This thing's definitely a 9 or 10 in toughness. But when you really look at this poem and figure out what's going on, the thing is pretty much telling a straight-up story. This isn't like "The Waste Land," where you're constantly jumping around between references and never quite knowing where you are. For 90% of this poem, you're traveling around with Odysseus on his wacky adventures.
Now, to be fair, this thing does have some tough references and some outdated nautical words that might trip a reader up. But they shouldn't be enough to totally throw you off. Just trust in our "Detailed Summary" to be your guide. You're in good hands… with Shmoop-state.