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By the same Author

fictionslabyr inthsa per sonal anthologythe book of imaginar y


beingsthe aleph and other stor ies ????-???? Selected Poems ????-???? Edited, with
an Intr oduction and Notes, byNORMAN THOMAS DI GIOVANNI Allen Lane The Penguin Pr ess
Published in Gr eat Br itain in ???? Allen Lane The Penguin Pr ess ?? Gr osvenor
Str eet, London W?isbn ? ???? ???? ?Pr inted in Gr eat Br itainby W & J Mackay Limited,
ChathamSet in Monotype BemboPublished in the United States of Amer ica in ???? by
Seymour Lawr ence Inc., Boston, Mass."Hengest Cyning", "After glow", "Plainness",
"The Dagger ", "To a Saxon Poet", "Daybr eak", "Fr agment", "Isidor o Acevedo", "The
Southside", "Rose", and "Montevideo", copyr ight (C) ????, ????, ????, ???? by Jor ge
Luis Bor ges and Nor man Thomas di Giovanni, or iginally appear ed inThe New Yor ker
"Embar king on the Study of Anglo-Saxon Gr ammar " and "Ar s Poetica", copyr ight
(C) ???? by Jor ge Luis Bor ges, or iginally appear ed in Har per 's Bazaar Other of the
tr anslations fir st appear ed in the following per iodicals and books: ADAM
Inter national Review, The Antioch Review,The Atlantic Monthly, Buenos Air es Her ald,
Encounter , The New Yor k Review of Books, The Times Liter ar y Supplement,
Tr iQuar ter ly,Vogue (London), The Yale Liter ar y Magazine, Selected
Tr anslations ????-???? by W. S. Mer win (Atheneum Publisher s), and Walking to Sleep
by Richar d Wilbur (Har cour t Br ace Jovanovich, Inc.)English tr anslations copyr ight
(C) ????, ????, ????, ????, ???? by Emece? Editor es, S. A., and Nor man Thomas di
Giovanni Intr oduction and Notes copyr ight (C) ???? by Nor man Thomas di Giovanni
Or iginal Spanish texts copyr ight (C) ????, ????, ????, ????, ????, ????, ???? by
Emece? Editor es, S. A., Buenos Air esAssistance for the editing and tr anslating of
this volume was given by the National Tr anslation Center , the Center for Inter -
Amer ican Relations, and the Far field Foundation.Gr ateful acknowledgment is made to
the Univer sity of Texas Pr ess, publisher s of Dr eamtiger st for per mission to make
new tr anslationsof "The Maker ", "A Yellow Rose", "The Witness", "Ever ything and
Nothing", and "Bor ges and Myself"; and to E. P. Dutton & Co., Inc., for per mission
to r epr int "The Maker " and "Bor ges and Myself",copyr ight (C) ???? by Emece?
Editor es, S. A., and Nor man Thomas di Giovanni, and an excer pt fr om "An
Autobiogr aphical Essay",copyr ight (C) ???? by Jor ge Luis Bor ges and Nor man Thomas
di Giovanni, fr om The Aleph and Other Stor ies ????-????. THE TRANSLATORS ben belitt
nor man thomas di giovanni alan duganwilliam fer gusonr ober t fitzger aldjohn hollander
r ichar d howar d and cesar r enner t w. s. mer winalastair r eidmar k str andjohn updike
r ichar d wilbur CONTENTS Author 's For ewor d Intr oduction FERVOR OF BUENOS AIRES xiii
xv? ? ??? ???? ?? ???? ?? ?? ?? ???? ?? ?????????????? The RecoletaUnknown
Str eet Sepulchr al Inscr iption PatioEmpty Dr awing Room RosasRemor se for Any Death
Inscr iption on Any Tomb After glowDaybr eakAt the Butcher 's PlainnessPar ting MOON
ACROSS THE WAY Anticipation of LoveGener al Quir oga Rides to His Death in a Car r iage
MontevideoManuscr ipt Found in a Book of Joseph Conr ad Dakar Dulcia Linquimus Ar va
Houses Like AngelsMy Whole LifeSunset Over Villa Or tu?zar vii SAN MARTIN COPYBOOK
The Mythical Founding of Buenos Air es Isidor o AcevedoDeathwatch on the Southside
Deaths of Buenos Air esTo Fr ancisco Lo?pez Mer inoTHE SELF AND THE OTHERTwo English
PoemsThe Cyclical NightConjectur al PoemTo a Minor Poet of the Gr eek Anthology??
?? ???? ?? A Page to Commemor ate Colonel Sua?r ez, Victor at Juni?n???? ?? ???
??? ??? Matthew XXV: ??The Dagger CompassA Poet of the Thir teenth Centur y A Soldier
of Ur binaLimitsA Saxon (a.d. ???)The GolemPoem of the GiftsChessElvir a de Alvear
Susana SocaRainThe Other Tiger Allusion to a Shadow of the Nineties Allusion to the
Death of Colonel Fr anciscoBor ges (????-????)The Bor gesEmbar king on the Study of
Anglo-Saxon Gr ammar ??? ??? ??? ??? ????????? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ?????? ???
?? viii Luke XXIIIAr s PoeticaA Rose and MiltonTo One No Longer Young Odyssey,
Book Twenty-thr eeTo a Minor Poet of ????TexasPoem Wr itten in a Copy of Beowulf
Hengest CyningFr agmentTo a Saxon PoetSnor r i Stur luson (????-????)To Char les XII of
SwedenEmanuel Swedenbor g Jonathan Edwar ds (????-????)Emer sonEdgar Allan Poe
Camden ????Par is ????Rafael Cansinos-AssensThe EnigmasTo My Reader SomeoneEvemess
EwigkeitOedipus and the RiddleSpinozaAdam Cast For thTo a CoinAnother Poem of Gifts
Ode Wr itten in ????Lines I Might Have Wr itten and Lost Ar ound ???? Juni?nA Soldier
Under Lee (????)??? ??? ?????? ??? ??? ??? ????????? ??? ?????? ??? ??? ??? ??????
??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ??? ?????? ??? ??? ?????? ??? ??? ??? ix The SeaA
Mor ning of ???? To a Saxon Poet The Labyr inthFOR THE GUITAR??? ??? ??? ??? Milonga
of the Two Br other s Milonga of Albor nozMUSEUM??? ??? Quatr ainLimits (or Good-byes)
The Poet Tells of His Fame The Gener ous EnemyLe Regr et d'He?r acliteAPPENDICES???
??? ??? ??? ??? I: New and Unr epr inted Poems II: Pr ose Pieces fr om El hacedor III:
Pr efaces and a DedicationIV: Supplement of ???? RevisionsNotesContents of the
Pr incipal Editions of Bor ges' Poetr y Index of Spanish and English Titles ??? ???
??? ??? ?????? ??? I do not set up to be a poet. Only an all-r ound
liter ar y man: a man who talks, not one who sings. . . . Excuse this little apology
for my muse; but I don't like to come befor e people who have a note of song, and
let it be supposed I do not know the differ ence.The Wor ks of Rober t Louis
Stevenson, Vailima Edition, XXII, ?? (London, ????) FOREWORD Fir st and for emost, I
think of myself as a r eader , then as a poet, then as a pr ose wr iter . The initial
par t of this statement calls for no explan- ation; the other two should be
qualified. They do not mean--they emphatically do not mean--that I am fonder of my
ver se than of my pr ose, or that I judge it as technically better . For all I know,
the opposite may be tr ue. I suspect that poetr y differ s fr om pr ose not, as many
have claimed, thr ough their dissimilar wor d patter ns, but by the fact that each is
r ead in a differ ent way. A passage r ead as though addr essed to the r eason is pr ose;
r ead as though addr essed to the imagination, it might be poetr y. I cannot say
whether my wor k is poetr y or not; I can only say that my appeal is to the
imagination. I am not a thinker . I am mer ely a man who has tr ied to explor e the
liter ar y possibilities of metaphysics and of r eligion. My stor ies ar e, in a sense,
outside of me. I dr eam them, shape them, and set them down; after that, once sent
out into the wor ld, they belong to other s. All that is per sonal to me, all that my
fr iends good-natur edly toler ate in me--my likes and dislikes, my hobbies, my
habits--ar e to be found in my ver se. In the long r un, per haps, I shall stand or
fall by my poems. Goethe, who is not one of my her oes, thought that all poetr y is
occasional poetr y (Gelegenheitsdichtung). I have for gotten the con- text, but I
suppose his statement is open to at least two inter pr eta- tions: he may have been
apologizing for the all-too-plentiful ver ses he contr ibuted to albums, or he may
have implied that tr ue poetr y spr ings fr om what a par ticular man feels at a
par ticular time. In my case, I can fair ly claim that ever y piece in this book had
its or igin in a par ticular mood, in a necessity of its own, and was not meant to
illustr ate a theor y or to fill out a volume. I have never thought of my poems, in
fact, in ter ms of publication. When this book was begun, some thr ee year s ago in
Cambr idge, it was the fir st time I had ever taken a dir ect hand in the tr anslation
of any of my own wor k. Di Giovanni and I have gone ver y thor - oughly over each
piece, each line, and each wor d; the fact that I am xiii not only a collabor ator
but also the wr iter has given us gr eater fr ee- dom, since we ar e less tied to
ver bal pr ecision than to inner meanings and intentions. I should like to thank the
outstanding Br itish and Amer ican poets who, by their skill and gener osity, have
made Eng- lish poems of my Spanish or iginals and so given them this new life. JORGE
LUIS BORGES Salt Lake City, ?? Mar ch ???? INTRODUCTION This is the fir st systematic
pr esentation in English of the poems of a wr iter who made his initial fame in his
own countr y near ly fifty year s ago with his poetr y, but whose pr esent-day univer sal
acclaim happens to r est on the small body of his pr ose. Until now, in England and
the United States, we have known only the Bor ges of the puzzling shor t stor ies and
luminous essays, Bor ges the br illiant conver sationalist, the imitated Bor ges, the
Anglo-Amer ican Bor ges. Of cour se, ther e is only one Bor ges, and no one will deny
that the centr al vision which infor ms all his wor k is a poetic vision, but with a
br oad selection of the poems available we at last begin to have Bor ges whole. We
may in this book even have, for the fir st time, the essence of Bor ges--the Bor ges
who is one of South Amer ica's, and the wor ld's, best poets. Bor ges' poetr y r equir es
no special key. For those who like a bio- gr aphical context, it is sufficient to
point out her e that the author was bor n in Buenos Air es, in ????, lear ned English
as a child at the side of an English gr andmother , and came to poetr y in English
under the influence of his father , who loved England's gr eat poets of the last
centur y. Educated in Geneva dur ing the Fir st Wor ld War , wher e he discover ed Whitman
and the Ger man expr essionists, Bor ges began wr iting poetr y in Fr ench and English.
Later , in Spain, in ????, he published his fir st poem, became involved with an
imagist sect called the "ultr aists", and, after r etur ning to Buenos Air es, saw his
fir st book into pr int himself. It would be super fluous to r epeat in
any gr eater detail what Bor ges has alr eady told us about his ear ly life and fir st
wr itings in his r ecent shor t autobiogr aphy. (That essay, which is pr inted
elsewher e, is not only a per fect intr oduction to Bor ges, setting his entir e
lifewor k in a fr ame, but also makes an ideal supple- mentar y intr oduction to the
pr esent volume.) For the r est, Bor ges himself pr ovides the most valuable insights
into his own poetr y; mindful of this, ten of his pr efaces ar e included at the end
of this edition, along with a full set of notes that fur nish the r eader with help-
ful histor ical and biogr aphical infor mation. As a poet, Bor ges has str iven over the
year s to wr ite mor e andxv mor e clear ly, plainly, and str aightfor war dly. A study of
the r evisions of his ear ly wor k fr om edition to edition of the poems shows a
str ipping away of bar oque or nament and a gr eater concer n for natur al wor d or der and
for the use of common language. Even his ideas about metaphor have moved in this
dir ection. "When I was a young man," Bor ges has r emar ked, "I was always hunting for
new metaphor s; then I found out that r eally good metaphor s ar e always the same."
The emphasis, then, has been away fr om callow, tir esome, and mer ely clever
inventiveness (a tr olley car seen as a man shoulder - ing a gun) to the str essing of
familiar and natur al affinities, such as dr eam-life, sleep-death, and the flow of
r iver s and time--a tur n, as Bor ges bitingly ter ms it, to sanity. Ther e is a gr eat
deal of tr uth to Bor ges' insistence that he has been fir st a r eader and then a
wr iter . For it is as a per user of books that he constantly plumps for such un-
abashedly old-fashioned qualities as r eadability, pleasur e, and enjoy- ment,
demanding in tur n that the wr iter in him pr ovide this same complement of unacademic
and r efr eshing vir tues in his own wor k.* All these elements add up, I find, to
endear ing aspir ations in a twentieth-centur y poet. I want now to intr oduce the
pr esent selection. Jor ge Luis Bor ges came into my consciousness in the fall
of ????. I was living an hour or so nor th of Boston, and I had been asked to
compile a bilingual anthology of Latin-Amer ican ver se. Reading Bor ges then for the
fir st time in or der to choose his best half-dozen pages, I quickly discover ed
sever al poems I admir ed, but I was most moved by a piece called "Elvir a de Alvear ",
for something back of its lines--even in a weak tr anslation--connected me
str aightaway with Bor ges' humanity. I couldn't have been gr eener , having come to
Bor ges not thr ough the celebr ated stor ies but thr ough the (then) over - looked
poems. Wanting to lear n mor e about the poet and the man, I * Many of Bor ges'
cur r ent views on poetr y ar e found in thr ee concise essays-- "On the Classics", "A
Defense of Poetr y", and "The Metaphor "--collected under the title "Up fr om
Ultr aism" and published in The New Yor k Review of Books, XV, ?, ?? August ????. xvi
next r ead Ronald Chr ist's intelligent Bor ges inter view in the Par is Review. The
author leaped alive and br istling off those pages--and yet modest and lovable and
cur iously self-effacing. I r ecognized the same Bor ges who had wr itten "Elvir a de
Alvear ". By that point, the English ver sions I had been r eading all felt pale; the
man who spoke with such spar kle and wit had to wr ite far better than his
tr anslations showed. (His own English, I later found out, sur passed that of the
gener al r un of his tr anslated wor k.) A study of the or iginal texts became
unavoidable, and, in Cambr idge one day to buy them, I lear ned by chance that Bor ges
was at Har var d at that moment and for that year as Char les Eliot Nor ton Pr ofessor
of Poetr y. Seizing this oppor tunity, I wr ote him at once, pr oposing an English-
languageedition of his poetr y, and he answer ed, asking me to pay him a visit. That
visit, made ear ly in December , ????, has never ended. Bor ges and I liked each
other , we enjoyed the wor k, and it was the r ight hour to have come knocking. At the
time, Bor ges was suffer ing fr om an unhappy pr ivate life and fr om the peculiar
isolation it had for ced him into. I had happened along, all unwittingly, to help
fill those long empty Sundays he so dr eaded, to offer him the kind of wor k he could
give his mind to (this in tur n ear ned him much-needed self-justification), and to
lend him the ear he desper ately r equir ed. Ir oni- cally, in the shor t space of thr ee
weeks or a month, I had become the last Amer ican to discover Bor ges and the fir st
to wor k with him. It was a lucky chain of events, and it kept getting luckier . Our
pr oject r eceived the assistance of foundations, we wer e asked to or ganize a Bor ges
r eading in New Yor k, and magazines began to take notice of what we wer e doing. The
next Apr il, befor e we par ted, Bor ges invited me to come to Buenos Air es, and he
also gave me car te blanche to handle all his publishing affair s in English. Six
months later I r e-joined him, and now for the past two and a half year s I have been
living in Buenos Air es, wher e Bor ges and I ar e pr oducing English ver sions of twelve
of his books. What star ted with that bar ely mor e than casual fir st r eading has
tur ned into a fr iendship, a tr ust, a whole car eer . "What I liked about you, di
Giovanni," Bor ges confided to me on my ar r ival in Buenos Air es almost a year after
we fir st met, "was that ther e at Har var d you wer e the only per son who took me
ser iously as a poet." "But I see you as a poet, Bor ges." "Yes," he said, xvii "I
see myself as a poet--that's our link." So much for autobiogr aphy, so much for the
hand of destiny. The editing of this book was lar gely done in collabor ation with
the author . The choice of poems was wor ked out jointly. No ver y r igid pr inciple of
selection was necessar y, since we wer e out to include as many poems as possible,
but we did tr y to str ike cer tain balances. We wanted to include all the famous
poems, to cover ever y per iod, to r epr esent most of the differ ent for ms and kinds of
lines the poet has attempted, as well as to display his var ious thematic inter ests.
At the same time, it seemed appr opr iate to pr int as many poems on Amer i- can and
Anglo-Saxon subjects as we could; these latter wer e of par ti- cular inter est to me.
Over all, of cour se, we favor ed the later poetr y. Bor ges chafed and fussed a good
deal over the choice of poems fr om his fir st thr ee books, which he continues to
impr ove with r evisions but which nonetheless still cause him embar r assment, but
withinsistence and per sistence I was finally able to convince him that much of this
ear ly wor k is both valuable and pleasur able. Over a thir d of the ear ly pieces ar e
in our selection and mor e than half of the author 's later pr oduction. The ninety
poems in the main section of this book r epr esent slightly mor e than half the entir e
contents of Bor ges' Obr a poe?tica ????-????, fr om which our selection is dr awn. We
have also, in the appendices, included twelve additional pieces. In all, this book
contains ??? poems, with ??? accompanying Spanish texts (one of the poems was
wr itten in English). We hope in futur e editions to have the oppor tunity to expand
the contents of the main section. While the selection was being made, I went about
choosing poets and commissioning tr anslations. I began with six poets I had wor ked
with befor e on a book of Jor ge Guille?n's poems (W. S. Mer win, Alastair Reid, Mar k
Str and, Richar d Wilbur , Alan Dugan, and Ben Belitt); ar ound Cambr idge, I r an into
Rober t Fitzger ald, William Fer guson, and John Updike; later I was intr oduced to
Richar d Howar d, who in tur n intr oduced me to John Hollander . Ever yone was keen on
Bor ges, and no one had to be asked twice. Of existing tr anslations (that also
coincided with titles we wanted in our book), only the pr evious wor k of two poets
seemed wor thwhile. Rober t Fitzger ald, who back in ???? was r esponsible for Bor ges'
second appear ance in English, was asked to r evise six of his ear ly effor ts, and
xviii Alastair Reid was called on to r evise seven of his. Apar t fr om these
thir teen, ever ything else was especially pr epar ed for this volume. As the
commissions and cor r espondence pr oceeded, a method began to evolve. This method was
based on two factor s: the difficulty of the poem and the tr anslator 's familiar ity
with Spanish. To begin with, on my own, I studied each poem and for most of them
wr ote out liter al ver sions which I took to Bor ges and, because of the degr ee of his
blindness, r ead to him. I would r ead a line or two of Spanish at a time, followed
by an English equivalent for liter al sense. Occasion- ally, my pr epar ations
exhausted, we wr ote out tr ansliter ations on the spot. Finally we had one pr epar ed
for ever y piece in the selection. On the sheets of these r ough ver sions I also
jotted down whatever deli- ber ate or spontaneous comments on the poem Bor ges would
make as I r ead it to him, and noted any additional biogr aphical or histor ical
backgr ound that came up in our talks. I was always on the lookout for par ticular s
of local atmospher e--anything, in shor t, that I might pass on to the pr ospective
tr anslator in hopes of lightening his task or of impr oving the quality of the
tr anslation or of doing both. It was her e and in this way that I tr ied to
anticipate the tr anslator 's pr oblems and his possible questions, and so solve them
for him in advance. I made a point, for example, of telling a tr anslator ahead of
time which sense of "suen?o" Bor ges intended in any given instance--"sleep" or
"dr eam". (Because of the almost automatic connection between Bor ges and dr eams, the
unguided tr anslator plumps unfailingly for "dr eam", yet mor e often than not the
author 's intention is "sleep".) Ther e wer e also cases of Bor ges' sometimes
idiosyncr atic usage: thr oughout his wor k, the wor d "tar de" is r ar ely "after noon"
and usually "evening". (Ther e is no after noon in Buenos Air es, explains Bor ges;
people sleep a siesta thr ough the hot hour s, and life only picks up in the
evening.) Poets whose knowledge of Spanish
was little, or nonexistent, or out of pr actice r eceived line-for -line and wor d-
for -wor d tr ansliter a- tions, together with any other aids--such as notes,
suggestions, or sour ces--that Bor ges and I could give. Those with a super ior know-
ledge of Spanish usually got no liter al ver sions but all the other help. However ,
wher e passages wer e exceptionally difficult, as in so much of Bor ges' ear ly poetr y,
these har d lines might be spelled out wor d xix by wor d. Cer tain of the poems wer e
not only ver y difficult but wer e also so local in topic that on two occasions
Alastair Reid, whose Spanish is good, agr eed to make tr anslations only if I would
pr ovide the liter al ver sion wor ked out with Bor ges, plus whatever notes we could
supply. One r esult of this is Reid's br illiant "Mythical Founding of Buenos Air es",
a poem so compounded of local r efer ences and jokes--indeed, the whole poem is a
joke--that at the same time we placed the r aw mater ial into the tr anslator 's hands,
Bor ges and I tr ied to dissuade him fr om even attempting the task. The degr ee of
collabor ation between Bor ges, editor , and each poet var ied widely fr om poem to
poem. Some pieces--especially Bor ges' later wor k, either on univer sal themes or
else on subjects with which the tr anslator felt at home--wer e br ought into English
with har dly an assist fr om Bor ges and me. Of cour se, the liter al ver sion was always
ther e in my hands as a check. Other times--when the text pr esented difficulties or
obscur ities--sever al dr afts and a long flow of letter s went back and for th between
poet and editor befor e a satis- factor y ver sion was r eached. Usually, dur ing these
inter mediate stages, I did not consult Bor ges--not until my own cr itical r esour ces
wer e exhausted. When at last I br ought him a dr aft, it was either finished or close
to being finished. As these r esults wer e r ead to him, Bor ges listened eager ly and
was gener ous in his pr aise, often inter - r upting me to declar e a line "far better
than the or iginal". It was always on the quality of the ver se as it developed in
English, and never on any jealous pr eser vation of the Spanish lines or wor ding,
that Bor ges focused his attention. In fact, so far was he fr om tr eating the Spanish
or iginals as sacr ed text that many times Bor ges r efer r ed to his poems as "mer e
r ough dr afts" for the English ver sions. At the outset, he had even admonished me,
"When you wr ite to the poets, tell them that despite my poems the tr anslations must
be good." Ther e was a gener ous r etur n fr om the poets, too. Many encour aged and some
blessed our adopted method, and along the way I was helped and taught a good deal.
Alan Dugan, in cr iticizing a few of my own tr anslations, showed me that, despite my
access to Bor ges, slips could be made and that I could not always be cocksur e about
my inter pr etation of knotty passages. This for ced me to double-check with Bor ges
ther eafter whenever any phr ase was not absolutely plain.xx John Updike complained,
when I was being too liter al-minded about one of his sonnets, that I had blithely
ignor ed the fact that his lines wer e car efully composed in iambic pentameter . He
was r ight. This awakened me to one sensible solution--and the one most widely
adopted in the book--to the pr oblem of tr eating Bor ges' sonnets in English.
Following Updike's lead, I encour aged other tr anslator s to attempt blank ver se,
closing when possible with a r hymed couplet. Alastair Reid and I favor ed this
example, since it does not for ce r hyme, which is not poetr y. (Reid and I wer e to
car r y on a volumi- nous cor r espondence, useful to me, in which we discussed ever y
angle of tr anslation theor y and pr actice.) Richar d Wilbur , William Fer guson, and
Rober t Fitzger ald found their own ways with the sonnet for m, as did John Hollander
and Mar k Str and. Richar d Howar d, who in Ce?sar Renner t had a per sonal Spanish
exper t, applied to the for m his favor ite metr ical scheme--syllable-count. His
success tempted me in this dir ection, and I used syllabic meter to solvethr ee
differ ent kinds of pr oblems in tr anslations of my own. In the wor k of r evising
cer tain of their pr evious Bor ges tr ansla- tions, Rober t Fitzger ald's and Alastair
Reid's gener osity knew no limits. I should like to give some detailed examples of
the kinds of pr oblems faced in the pr esent book, and I may as well begin with
illustr ations fr om a pair of fr esh ver sions under taken by these two poets. Reid's
"A Page to Commemor ate Colonel Sua?r ez, Victor atJuni?n" was fir st published in
Anthony K er r igan's edition of A Per - sonal Anthology. Ther e, although the tone and
language wer e r ight, the poem was myster iously missing a line, and it contained a
number of annoying petty mistakes; wor st of all was the confusion that r esulted
fr om the tr anslator 's lack of the har d (and complex) histor ical facts needed to set
the action str aight. Of cour se, without that pr oper tone in the fir st place, no
amount of r evision would have impr oved the poem; the essential backgr ound
infor mation Bor ges and I could supply. In the poem, Colonel Sua?r ez, though an
Ar gentine officer , was not living in his own land in alienation (as in Reid's fir st
ver sion), but was in exile in Ur uguay; hence it was not luck but fate that took him
ther e. In exile, time did not flow for him, but was a monotony. The battle itself
was fought in the Andes, on a tableland in Per u--a place not to be confused with
the Ar gentine town named for it at a xxi later date. These wer e the War s of
Independence, and Sua?r ez was leading Per uvian tr oops, not fighting against them.
In one line, Bor ges had wr itten simply of the "laber into de los eje?r citos"
("labyr inth of ar mies"), taking it for gr anted that his r eader s alr eady knew that
the engagement, so famous in South Amer ican histor y, was fought entir ely between
hor semen. No poet wr iting in English could be expected to be awar e of this fr om
Bor ges' Spanish. As her e the tr ans- lator was to change his ear lier "foot soldier s"
to "cavalr ies", with the r est of the biogr aphical and histor ical details befor e him
Reid went on to r ewor k the centr al elements of the poem so as to make its sour ces
in r emote South Amer ican politics absolutely clear . Thanks to his gifts, not to
mention his for bear ance, the r esulting new poem has gained in str ength and
vividness. Rober t Fitzger ald was invited to r evise "Deathwatch on the South- side"
(in its ear lier life called "The Night They K ept Vigil in the South") for an
entir ely differ ent set of r easons. To begin with, Bor ges had made numer ous small
r evisions in the text since Fitzger ald had fir st tr anslated it over twenty-five
year s befor e, and we wanted the English ver sion to confor m with these alter ations.
At the same time, with the author himself available for consultation, it seemed a
good idea to tr y to clear up sever al vague or obscur e points so char acter istic of
Bor ges' ear ly style. Fir st off, Bor ges r evealed that the "Sur " in the title meant
specifically the south side of Buenos Air es and did not r efer to the south of
Ar gentina or stand for some abstr act symbolic South. But just what did he mean in
one of his lines by "el tiempo abundante de la noche"? This was found out, passed
on to Fitzger ald, and eventually the ear lier "the abundant night-time" was
tr ansfor med into "time gr own pur e in plenitude of night". Similar ly, Bor ges'ver y
difficult and subjective line "y algu?n silbido solo en el mundo" went fr om "a
whistle alone in the wor ld" to "and a whistler somewher e, lonely in the
nightwor ld". Elsewher e, attending to the smallest details, Bor ges suggested that
the wor d "patio", which occur s fr e- quently in the poem, not be r ender ed as
"cour tyar d". To Bor ges this wor d evoked something far mor e magnificent than the
humble patio he r emember ed fr om for ty year s ear lier , when the events in the poem
took place. Fitzger ald's simple and effective solution was "yar d". It is in the
almost impenetr able density of the poem's last eight lines, xxii however , that
Fitzger ald cr owned his achievement. Exactly what was meant by "sentenciosas calles
del Sur "? Bor ges saw at once that he had not r eally made his intention clear her e,
so he began shedding light on the text and giving me mater ial for notes to send the
tr anslator . It seemed that the author meant "sententious" in a pur ely physical and
descr iptive sense. Ther e was a ter se and concise quality about the str eets, and to
descr ibe them a wor d was r equir ed that would give the idea of long vistas and
str aight lines, of an unending sweep of the eye. Taking char acter istic pains and
wor king the poem thr ough sever al dr afts, Fitzger ald tur ned his ear lier lines,and
sententious and slowly-to-be-mer ited str eets of the South, the dar k br eeze acr oss
the for ehead that tur ns back,to:and gr aven str eets on the Southside, one by one to
be savor ed, and a dar k br eeze in my face as I walk home. My own tr anslation of
"Conjectur al Poem" star ted out as an attempt to cor r ect the er r or s and to r elieve
the liter alness of two pr evious English ver sions of what is often consider ed
Bor ges' finest poem. Each of these ear lier tr anslations had somehow dr opped the
same line, and one contained a disastr ous er r or of meaning. But still wor se was
their diction: both gave "The later al night" for the begin- ning of Bor ges' line
"La noche later al de los pantanos" (what in the wor ld is a later al night?), and one
had r ender ed the simple Spanish wor d for "knife" as "poniar d blade". Once I got
beyond this objec- tive of my tr anslation, I felt myself alr eady halfway into
Lapr ida's hunted skin, and I just kept on in pur suit of physical sensations-- fr om
those cinder s hailing down on the wind at the outset to the taste of metal at the
end. Along the way, I got Bor ges to amplify the ter m "montoner os"--gaucho
militiamen--and I scour ed Dante for the r efer ence to the Pur gator io, finding that
Bor ges' four teenth line is a dir ect tr anslation fr om the Italian. When I put the
question of "later al
night" to Bor ges, however , he astonished me. He said he no longer knew exactly
what he meant. No pompous explanation, no defense,just that plain admission. Then,
telling me to seek some satisfactor y solution of my own, he went on to set that
par ticular scene for me as xxiii he himself had conceived it after r eading
contempor ar y r epor ts. Lapr ida had been over taken on a kind of r oadway, per haps an
em- bankment r oad, that cut thr ough the mar shland. It seemed to me, then, that
Lapr ida would have felt the night pr essing in fr om the swamps on either hand. Yes,
said Bor ges, that was it; and ther e I had the ker nel of my English line. Sometime
later , when I was about to r ead a pr ovisional dr aft of the poem's last section to
Bor ges one after - noon, he inter r upted to say that I ought to know befor ehand that
he had or iginally thought out par t of one line in English and then tr ans- lated it
into Spanish. It was the half-line "se cier nen sobr e mi?"; his English phr ase was
"loom over me". Undaunted, I then r ead him my tr anslation, "tighten the r ing ar ound
me", which impr essed him so favor ably he quickly pr onounced it better than his own.
After this, spur r ed on by his open mind and gener ous spir it, I went back again to
the beginning of the poem, wanting now to wor k it out in a metr ical for m. Unr hymed
Spanish eleven-syllable lines in most cases can be tur ned into good English blank
ver se. In this poem, pentameter some- how seemed too r igid, so I shifted instead to
a syllabic meter and shaped each line into ten syllables--a fitting solution, I
think, since it allows fr eedom fr om measur ed str esses while still imposing on the
lines a subtle r estr aint.The making of Ben Belitt's tr anslation "Deaths of Buenos
Air es",one of Bor ges' longest poems and also his most difficult, exacted the
heaviest demands on both the r esour ces and the application of the thr ee
collabor ator s. At the outset, ther e seemed har dly a dozen lines in the poem that
did not r equir e the fullest explanation and note- gather ing. Bor ges himself
fr etted, and he mocked his over ly compli- cated and unnecessar ily ar duous ear ly
style. He no longer r ecalled the meaning of the wor d "tr apacer i?as", for example,
and sent me to the dictionar y to find out. "Why can't a young poet's language be
simple and str aightfor war d?" he wonder ed. Dur ing one per iod, Bor ges con- fided to
me, he had laid his hands on a dictionar y of Ar gentinisms and wor ked in so many
fancy local wor ds that his own countr ymen bar ely under stood him. Over the year s,
though, thr ough r evision, much of this language had been set str aight. When at last
I wr ote Belitt about the poem, I sent him two packed pages of notations. These
included ever ything fr om pointing out the chief distinguishing xxiv featur es of
the two cemeter ies--the r ather humble Chacar ita and mor e dignified Recoleta--down
to the meaning of unusual wor ds like "tr apacer i?as" and "estr afalar ias".
Additionally, "La Quema" was not a symbolic Flame but the name of the municipal
inciner ator ; "subur bio" was not what we mean by "subur b" but r efer r ed to the
shabby, r un-down outskir ts of the city. And so on. Belitt, who found the poem to
his taste, and a tr ue challenge, then took over . His fir st dr aft was r emar kably
good; it was exciting and had set the pr oper tone. And yet I was to send him four
pages of quer ies and cr iticisms (and pr aise), line by line. We set local geogr aphy
str aight, clar ified images and sought ever gr eater pr ecision in wor d choice. The
"tene- ments deep in the south" of his fir st dr aft became "the Southside's
cluster ing tenements". Even punctuation was ar gued and defended back and for th
thr ough a long ser ies of letter s. A complete second dr aft invited mor e quibbles and
pr oduced mor e cr iticism. Finally, I r ead the poem to Bor ges, who felt as I did that
it was a tr emendous job. "Thanks for the joint blessing," wr ote Belitt, "I was just
about to thr ow in my sweaty old towel." Ther e was a final flur r y and r ound of
tinker ing. It had taken thr ee months to br ing the poem to its final stage, and I
shar ed the tr anslator 's r elief. In "Deaths of Buenos Air es", Belitt has pr oduced a
poem of undiminished power , and I think he has given us a master piece of
tr anslation. A wor d, in conclusion, about the Spanish texts. Since the final onset
of his blindness in the ????'s, Bor ges has been unable to exer cise contr ol over the
pr oofr eading of his wor k. Fr om that time on, with each successive pr inting of his
poems, while mistakes wer e occasion- ally caught, fr esh er r or s usually cr ept in.
Even a r ecent effor t on our par t to set this r ight was doomed to failur e when the
author and I could not be pr esent in Buenos Air es to check final pr oof of all the
volumes of the latest edition of his poetr y. For the pr esent selection, we have
made ever y effor t to cor r ect past er r or s, and we have also incor por ated or
other wise noted all of the author 's most r ecent alter ations. Many of the texts have
been collated with their ear liest pr intings in an effor t to r estor e the cor r ect
placement of stanza br eaks. At least one poem her e is pr inted whole for the fir st
time since ????; a missing line had passed undetected thr ough six subsequent
differ ent editions and sever al other r epr intings. As well as to pr esent Bor ges xxv
the poet in English, then, it has been an aim of this edition to per for m the
additional ser vice of pr oviding r eader s with accur ate texts of the Spanish
or iginals. nor man thomas di giovanni Buenos Air es, ?? Mar ch ???? NOTEFor this
English edition, five poems have been added to the main section. n.t. di g. Buenos
Air es, ?? Mar ch ???? Fer vor of Buenos Air es Fer vor de Buenos Air es???? LA RECOLETA
Convencidos de caducidadpor tantas nobles cer tidumbr es del polvo, nos demor amos y
bajamos la vozentr e las lentas filas de panteones,cuya r eto?r ica de sombr a y de ma?
r mol pr omete o pr efigur a la deseabledignidad de haber muer to.Bellos son los
sepulcr os,el desnudo lati?n y las tr abadas fechas fatales, la conjuncio?n del ma?
r mol y de la flor y las plazuelas con fr escur a de patioy los muchos ayer es de la
histor iahoy detenida y u?nica.Equivocamos esa paz con la muer tey cr eemos anhelar
nuestr o finy anhelamos el suen?o y la indifer encia. Vibr ante en las espadas y en la
pasio?ny dor mida en la hiedr a,so?lo la vida existe.El espacio y el tiempo son
for mas suyas, son instr umentos ma?gicos del alma,y cuando e?sta se apague, se
apagar a?n con ella el espacio, el tiempo y la muer te, como al cesar la luzcaduca el
simulacr o de los espejosque ya la tar de fue apagando.Sombr a benigna de los a?
r boles,viento con pa?jar os que sobr e las r amas ondea, alma que se disper sa en otr as
almas,fuer a un milagr o que alguna vez dejar an de ser , milagr o incompr ensible, ? THE
RECOLETA Convinced of our mor talityby so many confir mations of final dust,we dr op
our voices, our steps gr ow slow between the slow r ows of family cr ypts, whose
r hetor ic of shadow and stone pr omises or pr efigur es the coveteddignity of being
dead.Ther e is beauty in the tombs,the spar e Latin and link of fatal dates,the
conjunction of mar ble and flower s,the br oad inter sections, as cool as patios, and
all our yester days of a histor ynow stilled and unique.We mistake this peace for
death,believing we year n for our endwhen we year n for sleep and oblivion. Vibr ant
in swor ds and in passion,asleep in ivy,only life is r eal.Space and time ar e its
shapes,the mind's magical modes,and when life bur ns out,space, time, and death go
out with it,as when light failsthe image in the mir r or fails,alr eady gr own dim in
the dusk.K indly shade of the tr ees,br eeze r ich with bir ds r ocking the br anches, my
soul losing itself in other souls--only a wonder could undo their existence, a
wonder not to be under stood, ? aunque su imaginar ia r epeticio?n infame con hor r or
nuestr os di?as. Estas cosas pense? en la Recoleta, en el lugar de mi ceniza. ?
however much its imagined r ecur r ence taints our days with dr ead.These thoughts came
to me in the Recoleta, in the place wher e my ashes will He. [Nor man Thomas di
Giovanni] ? CALLE DESCONOCIDA Penumbr a de la palomallamar on los hebr eos a la
iniciacio?n de la tar de cuando la sombr a no entor pece los pasosy la venida de la
noche se advier tecomo una mu?sica esper ada,no como si?mbolo de nuestr a esencial
nader i?a. En esa hor a de fina luz ar enosamis pasos dier on con una calle ignor ada,
abier ta en noble anchur a de ter r aza, mostr ando en las comisas y en las par edes
color es blandos como el mismo cieloque conmovi?a el fondo.Todo--honesta mediani?a
de las casas auster as, tr avesur a de columnitas y aldabas, tal vez una esper anza de
nin?a en los balcones-- se me adentr o? en el vano cor azo?ncon limpidez de la?gr ima.
Quiza? esa hor a u?nicaaventajaba con pr estigio la calle,da?ndole pr ivilegios de
ter nur a,hacie?ndola r eal como una leyenda o un ver so; lo cier to es que la senti?
lejanamente cer cana como r ecuer do que si llega cansadoes por que viene de la hondur a
del alma. Intimo y entr an?ableer a el milagr o de la calle clar ay so?lo despue?s
entendi? que aquel lugar er a extr an?o, que toda casa es candelabr odonde ar den con
aislada llama las vidas, que todo inmeditado paso nuestr o camina sobr e Go?lgotas
ajenos. ? UNK NOWN STREET Twilight of the dovethe Hebr ews called the beginning of
evening when the shadow does not mir e the footsteps and the coming of night is
r ecognizedlike an awaited music,not as a symbol of our essential insignificance. In
that hour of fine sandy lightmy footsteps found a str eet I did not know opening as
thoughonto a noble sweep of ter r ace,disclosing on cor nices and wallscolor s as soft
as the sky itselfthat moved the backgr ound.Ever ything--fr ank mediocr ity of the
plain houses, playfulness of little columns and knocker s, per haps a gir l's hope
fr om the window r ailings-- enter ed my vain hear twith the clar ity of a tear .That may
have been the one
hour ever to enhance the str eet with a spell, giving it pr ivileges of tender ness,
making it r eal like a legend or a ver se;what is cer tain is that I felt it r emotely
near , like a memor y which ar r ives exhausted Mir acle of the glowing str eet,intimate
and deeply stir r ing;and only after war dI r ealized that that place was str ange,that
ever y house is a candelabr awher e the lives bur n each in its separ ate flame, that
each of our unthinking footstepsmakes its way over the Golgothas of other s. [W. S.
Mer win] only because it has come fr om the depths of the soul. ? INSCRIPCION
SEPULCRAL Par a el cor onel Isidor o Sua?r ez, mi bisabueloDilato? su valor sobr e los
Andes.Contr asto? montan?as y eje?r citos.La audacia fue costumbr e de su espada.
Impuso en Juni?n te?r mino ventur oso a la lucha y a las lanzas del Per u? dio sangr e
espan?ola. Escr ibio? su censo de hazan?asen pr osa r i?gida como los clar ines beli?
sonos. Mur io? cer cado de un destier r o implacable. Hoy es un poco de ceniza y de
glor ia. ? SEPULCHRAL INSCRIPTION For Colonel Isidor o Sua?r ez, my gr eat-gr andfather
His valor passed beyond the Andes.He fought against mountains and ar mies. Audacity
was a habit with his swor d.At Juni?n he put a lucky end to the fight and gave
Spanish blood to Per uvian lances. He wr ote his r oll of deedsin pr ose inflexible as
battlesinging tr umpets. He died walled in by implacable exile. Now he is a handful
of dust and glor y. [Rober t Fitzger ald] ? UN PATIO Con la tar dese cansar on los dos o
tr es color es del patio.La gr an fr anqueza de la luna llenaya no entusiasma su
habitual fir mamento. Patio, cielo encauzado.El patio es el declivepor el cual se
der r ama el cielo en la casa. Ser ena,la eter nidad esper a en la encr ucijada de
estr ellas. Gr ato es vivir en la amistad oscur ade un zagua?n, de una par r a y de un
aljibe. ?? PATIO With eveningthe two or thr ee color s of the patio gr ew wear y. The
huge candor of the full moonno longer enchants its usual fir mament.Patio: heaven's
water cour se.The patio is the slopedown which the sky flows into the house. Ser enely
eter nity waits at the cr ossway of the star s.It is lovely to live in the dar k
fr iendlinessof cover ed entr ance way, ar bor , and wellhead. [Rober t Fitzger ald] ??
SALA VACIA Los muebles de caoba per petu?an entr e la indecisio?n del br ocado su
ter tulia de siempr e.Los daguer r otiposmienten su falsa cer cani?ade vejez
enclaustr ada en un espejo y ante nuestr o examen se escur r en como fechas inu?tilesde
bor r osos aniver sar ios.Con adema?n desdibujadosu casi-voz angustiosacor r e detr a?s de
nuestr as almascon ma?s de medio siglo de atr aso y apenas si estar a? ahor a en las
man?anas iniciales de nuestr a infancia. La actualidad constanteconvincente y
sangui?neafesteja en el tr aji?n de la callesu plenitud ir r ecusablede apoteosis
pr esentemientr as la luzabr e un boquete en los cr istales y humilla las seniles
butacasy ar r incona y ahor ca la voz laciade los antepasados. ?? EMPTY DRAWING ROOM
Amid the br ocade's dimnessthe mahogany suite continuesits ever lasting conver sation.
The daguer r eotypes tell their lie: a false near nessof old age cloister ed in a
mir r or ,and when we look har d they elude us like pointless datesof mur ky
anniver sar ies.With a blur r ed gestur etheir anxious almost-voicer uns after our souls
mor e than half a centur y lateand ther e it's scar cely r eachedthe fir st mor nings of
our childhood. Actuality, ceaseless,r uddy, and beyond doubt,celebr ates in the
str eet's tr afficits unassailable abundanceof pr esent apotheosis,while the light
slices thr ough the windowpanesand humbles the senile ar mchair sand comer s and
str anglesthe shr iveled voiceof these ancestor s.[W. S. Mer win] ?? ROSAS En la sala
tr anquilacuyo r eloj auster o der r amaun tiempo ya sin aventur as ni asombr osobr e la
lastimosa blancur aque amor taja la pasio?n r oja de la caoba, alguien en queja de
car in?opr onuncio? el nombr e familiar mente hor r endo. La imagen del tir anoabar r oto?
el instante,no clar a como un ma?r mol en un bosque,sino gr ande y umbr i?acomo la
sombr a de una r emota montan?ay conjetur as y memor iassucedier on a la mencio?n
eventualcomo un eco insondable.Famosamente infamesu nombr e fue desolacio?n en las
calles, idola?tr ico amor en el gauchajey hor r or de pun?aladas en la histor ia.Hoy el
olvido bor r a su censo de muer tes, por que son par ciales los cr i?menessi los
cotejamos con la fechor i?a del Tiempo, esa inmor talidad infatigableque anonada con
silenciosa culpa las r azasy en cuya her ida siempr e abier ta que el u?ltimo dios
habr a? de r estan?ar el u?ltimo di?a, cabe toda la sangr e der r amada.No se? si Rosas
fue so?lo un a?vido pun?al como los abuelos deci?an; cr eo que fue como tu? y youn
azar inter calado en los hechosque vivio? en la cotidiana zozobr a ?? ROSAS In the
dr awing r oom's quietwhose r igor ous clock scatter sits unclouded and or dinar y timeon
the desolate whitethat swathes the mahogany's r ed heat,a voice, r epr oachful and
tender ,pr onounced that familiar ly sinister name. Str aightway his tyr annical image
loomed huge on the moment,not like mar ble pr ofiled by a for est,but shadowy, vast,
and r emotelike a dar kening mountain.Conjectur e and memor yflowed in on that casual
utter ancelike a bottomless echo.Famous in infamy,his name once could r avage a city,
r ally the gaucho's idolatr y,and stab hor r or in histor y.We lose count of those
cor pses today,cr ime is mor e piecemealif we weigh Time's fer ocity into the balance--
the unwear ied immor talitythat decimates men without ever declar ing its guilt, the
fester ing woundwher e all a wor ld's bloodshed awaits the last of the godsto seal the
wor ld's sor es on the last of all days.Per haps Rosaswas only the implacable butcher
our gr andfather s thought him; I think of him now, like our selves, asa cr eatur e of
chance enclosed in an action's par entheses: he lived out the ever yday anguish of
things ?? e inquieto? par a felicidades y penas la incer tidumbr e de otr os.Hoy el mar
es una separ acio?n caudalosa entr e sus r estos y la patr ia,hoy toda vida por
lastimer a que sea puede pisar su nada y su noche.Ya Dios lo habr a? olvidadoy es
menos una injur ia que una piedad demor ar su infinita disolucio?ncon limosnas de
odio. ?? and for better or wor se tr oubled the age's uncer tainty.Today an ocean's
span divideswhat is left of his bones fr om his countr y; today, gr ief-str icken or
dr y-eyed, the living may gr ind both his night and his nullity under their heels.
Even God has for gotten him,and to delay his eter nal extinctionfor a pittance of
hatr edis to tur n our contempt into char ity now. [Ben Belitt] ?? REMORDIMIENTO POR
CUALQUIER DEFUNCION Libr e de la memor ia y de la esper anza, ilimitado, abstr acto,
casi futur o,el muer to no es un muer to: es la muer te. Como el Dios de los mi?sticos,
de quien deben negar se todos los pr edicados, el muer to ubicuamente ajenono es sino
la per dicio?n y ausencia del mundo. Todo se lo r obamos,no le dejamos ni un color ni
una si?laba: aqui? esta? el patio que ya no compar ten sus ojos, alli? la acer a
donde acecho? su esper anza. Hasta lo que pensamospodr i?a estar lo pensando e?l
tambie?n; nos hemos r epar tido como ladr onesel asombr oso caudal de noches y di?as.
?? REMORSE FOR ANY DEATH Fr ee of memor y and hope,unlimited, abstr act, almost
futur e,the dead per son is not a dead per son: it is death. Like the God of the
mystics,whom they insist has no attr ibutes,the dead per son, ever ywher e no one, is
nothing but the loss and absence of the wor ld. We r ob it of ever ything,we do not
leave it one color , one syllable: her e is the yar d which its eyes no longer take
up, ther e is the sidewalk wher e it waylaid its hope. Even what we ar e thinkingit
might be thinking too;we have shar ed out like thievesthe amazing tr easur e of nights
and days. [W. S. Mer win] ?? INSCRIPCION EN CUALQUIER SEPULCRO No ar r iesgue el ma?
r mol temer ar ioga?r r ulas infr acciones al todopoder del olvido, r ememor ando con
pr olijidadel nombr e, la opinio?n, los acontecimientos, lapatr ia.Tanto abalor io bien
adjudicado esta? a la tiniebla y el ma?r mol no hable lo que callan los hombr es. Lo
esencial de la vida fenecida--la tr e?mula esper anza,el milagr o implacable del dolor
y el asombr o delgoce--siempr e per dur ar a?. Ciegamente r eclama dur acio?n el alma
ar bitr ar ia cuando la tiene asegur ada en vidas ajenas, cuando tu? mismo er es la
continuacio?n r ealizada de quienes no alcanzar on tu tiempoy otr os ser a?n (y son) tu
inmor talidad en la tier r a.?? INSCRIPTION ON ANY TOMB Let not the r ash mar ble r isk
gar r ulous br eaches of oblivion's omnipotence,in many wor ds r ecallingname, r enown,
events, bir thplace.All those glass jewels ar e best left in the dar k.Let not the
mar ble say what men do not.The essentials of the dead man's life--the tr embling
hope,the implacable mir acle of pain, the wonder of sensualdelight--will abide
for ever .Blindly the willful soul asks for length of days when its sur vival is
assur ed by the lives of other s, when you your self ar e the embodied continuance of
those who did not live into your timeand other s will be (and ar e) your immor tality
onear th. [W. S. Mer win] ?? ULTIMO RESPLANDOR Siempr e es conmovedor el ocaso por
char r o o indigente que sea, per o ma?s conmovedor todavi?aes aquel br illo
desesper ado y final que her r umbr a la llanur acuando en el hor izonte nada r ecuer dala
vanaglor ia del poniente.Nos duele sostener esa luz tir ante y distinta, que es una
alucinacio?n que impone al espacio el una?nime miedo de la sombr ay que cesa de
golpecuando notamos su falsi?a,como se desbar ata un suen?ocuando el son?ador
advier te que duer me.?? AFTERGLOW Sunset is always distur bingwhether theatr ical or
muted,but still mor e distur bingis that last desper ate glowthat tur ns the plain to
r ustwhen on the hor izon nothing is leftof the pomp and clamor of the setting sun.
How har d holding on to that light, so tautly
dr awnand differ ent,that hallucination which the human fear of the dar k imposes on
spaceand which ceases at oncethe moment we r ealize its falsity,the way a dr eam is
br okenthe moment the sleeper knows he is dr eaming. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??
AMANECER En la honda noche univer salque apenas contr adicen los macilentos far oles
una r acha per didaha ofendido las calles tacitur nascomo pr esentimiento temblor osodel
amanecer hor r ible que r ondaigual que una mentir alos ar r abales desmantelados del
mundo. Cur ioso de la descansada tinieblay acobar dado por la amenaza del alba
r esenti? la tr emenda conjetur ade Schopenhauer y de Ber keleyque declar a que el mundo
es una actividad de la mente,un suen?o de las almas,sin base ni pr opo?sito ni
volumen.Y ya que las ideasno son eter nas como el ma?r molsino inmor tales como una
selva o un r i?o, la especulacio?n anter ior asumio? otr a for ma en el albay la
super sticio?n de esa hor acuando la luz como una enr edader ava a implicar las par edes
de la sombr a, doblego? mi r azo?ny tr azo? el capr icho siguiente:Si esta?n ajenas de
sustancia las cosasy si esta numer osa Buenos Air es equipar able en complicacio?n a
un eje?r cito, no es ma?s que un suen?oque logr an en compar tida magia las almas,hay
un instante?? DAYBREAK In the deep univer sal nightscar cely dispelled by the
flicker ing gaslampsa gust of wind coming out of nowher estir s the silent str eetswith
a tr embling pr esentimentof the hideous dawn that hauntslike some hethe tumbledown
outskir ts of cities all over the wor ld. Under the spell of the r efr eshing dar kness
and intimidated by the thr eat of dawn,I felt again that tr emendous conjectur eof
Schopenhauer and Ber keleywhich declar es the wor ldan activity of the mind,a dr eam of
souls,without foundation or pur pose or volume.And since ideasar e not like mar ble,
ever lasting,but ever -r enewing like a for est or a r iver ,the pr evious speculationtook
another for m in the dawn,and the super stition of the hour ,when the light like a
vinebegins twining itself to walls still in shadow, dominated my r easonand
pr ojected the following whim:If all things ar e devoid of matter and if this populous
Buenos Air escompar able to an ar my in complexityis no mor e than a dr eamar r ived at in
magic by souls wor king together ,ther e's a moment ?? en que peligr a desafor adamente
su ser y es el instante estr emecido del alba, cuando son pocos los que suen?an el
mundo y so?lo algunos tr asnochador es conser van cenicienta y apenas bosquejadala
visio?n de las callesque definir a?n despue?s con los otr os.? Hor a en que el suen?o
per tinaz de la vida esta? en peligr o de quebr anto,hor a en que le ser i?a fa?cil a
Diosmatar del todo su obr a! Per o otr a vez el mundo se ha salvado.La luz discur r e
inventando sucios color esy con algu?n r emor dimientode mi complicidad en la
r esur r eccio?n cotidiana solicito mi casa,ato?nita y glacial en la luz blanca,
mientr as un pa?jar o detiene el silencioy la noche gastadase ha quedado en los ojos
de los ciegos. ?? in which the city's existence is at the br ink of danger and
disor der and that is the tr embling moment of dawnwhen those who ar e dr eaming the
wor ld ar e few and only a handful of night owls pr eser veashen and sketchya vision of
the str eetswhich they will after war d define for other s.The hour in which the
per sistent dr eam of lifeis in danger of br eaking down,the hour in which God might
easilydestr oy all his wor k! But once mor e the wor ld comes to its own r escue. The
light str eaks in inventing dir ty color sand with a tr emor of r emor sefor my
complicity in the daily r ebir thI seek my house,amazed and icelike in the white
glar e, while a songbir d holds the silence back and the spent nightlives on in the
eyes of the blind. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ?? CARNICERIA Ma?s vil que un
lupanar la car nicer i?a r ubr ica como una afr enta la calle. Sobr e el dinteluna ciega
cabeza de vacapr eside el aquelar r ede car ne char r a y ma?r moles finales con la r emota
majestad de un i?dolo. ?? AT THE BUTCHER'S Meaner than a house of pr ostitutionthe
meat mar ket flaunts itself in the str eet like aninsult.Above the door the head of a
steer in a blind-eyed star e watches over the witches' Sabbathof flayed flesh and
mar ble slabswith the aloof majesty of an idol. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??
LLANEZA A Hayde?e LangeSe abr e la ver ja del jar di?ncon la docilidad de la pa?gina
que una fr ecuente devocio?n inter r ogay adentr o las mir adasno pr ecisan fijar se en
los objetosque ya esta?n cabalmente en la memor ia. Conozco las costumbr es y las
almasy ese dialecto de alusiones que toda agr upacio?n humana va ur diendo. No
necesito hablar ni mentir pr ivilegios; bien me conocen quienes aqui? me r odean,
bien saben mis congojas y mi flaqueza. Eso es alcanzar lo ma?s alto,lo que tal vez
nos dar a? el Cielo:no admir aciones ni victor iassino sencillamente ser admitidoscomo
par te de una Realidad innegable, como las piedr as y los a?r boles. ?? PLAINNESS To
Hayde?e LangeThe gar den's gr illwor k gateopens with the ease of a pagein a much-
thumbed book,and, once inside, our eyeshave no need to dwell on objects alr eady
fixed and exact in memor y. Her e habits and minds and the pr ivate languageall
families inventar e ever yday things to me.What necessity is ther e to speakor pr etend
to be someone else?The whole house knows me,they'r e awar e of my wor r ies and
weakness. This is the best that can happen--what Heaven per haps will gr ant us:not
to be wonder ed at or r equir ed to succeed but simply to be let inas par t of an
undeniable Reality,like stones of the r oad, like tr ees. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni]
?? DESPEDIDA Entr e mi amor y yo han de levantar se tr escientas noches como
tr escientas par edes y el mar ser a? una magia entr e nosotr os.El tiempo ar r ancar a?
con dur a manolas calles enzar zadas en mi pecho.No habr a? sino r ecuer dos.(Oh tar des
mer ecidas por la pena, noches esper anzadas de mir ar te, campos desalentados, pobr e
cielo humillado en la hondur a de los char cos como un a?ngel cai?do . . .Y tu vivir
que agr acia mis anhelos y ese bar r io dejado y placenter o que hoy en luz de mi amor
se r esplandece . . .) Definitiva como una estatua entr istecer a? tu ausencia otr os
campos. ?? PARTING Thr ee hundr ed nights like thr ee hundr ed walls must r ise between
my love and meand the sea will be a black ar t between us.Time with a har d hand will
tear out the str eets tangled in my br east. Nothing will be left but memor ies. (O
after noons ear ned with suffer ing, nights hoping for the sight of you, dejected
vacant lots, poor sky shamed in the bottom of the puddles like a fallen
angel. . . .And your life that gr aces my desir e and that r un-down and lighthear ted
neighbor hood shining today in the glow of my love. . . .)Final as a statueyour
absence will sadden other fields. [W. S. Mer win] ?? Moon Acr oss the Way Luna de
enfr ente???? AMOROSA ANTICIPACION Ni la intimidad de tu fr ente clar a como una
fiesta ni la pr ivanza de tu cuer po, au?n mister ioso y ta?citoy de nin?a,ni la
sucesio?n de tu vida situa?ndose en palabr as osilenciosser a?n favor tan mister ioso
como mir ar tu suen?o implicadoen la vigilia de mis br azos.Vir gen milagr osamente
otr a vez por la vir tudabsolutor ia del suen?o,quieta y r esplandeciente como una
dicha que lamemor ia elige,me dar a?s esa or illa de tu vida que tu? misma no tienes.
Ar r ojado a quietud,divisar e? esa playa u?ltima de tu ser y te ver e? por vez pr imer a,
quiza?,como Dios ha de ver te,desbar atada la ficcio?n del Tiempo,sin el amor , sin
mi?. ?? ANTICIPATION OF LOVE Neither the intimacy of your look, your br ow fair as a
feast day,nor the favor of your body, still myster ious, r eser ved, and childlike,nor
what comes to me of your life, settling in wor ds or silence,will be so myster ious a
giftas the sight of your sleep, enfoldedin the vigil of my ar ms.Vir gin again,
mir aculously, by the absolving power ofsleep,quiet and luminous like some happy
thing r ecover edby memor y,you will give me that shor e of your life that youyour self
do not own.Cast up into silenceI shall discer n that ultimate beach of your being
and see you for the fir st time, per haps,as God must see you--the fiction of Time
destr oyed,fr ee fr om love, fr om me. [Rober t Fitzger ald] ?? EL GENERAL QUIROGA VA EN
COCHE AL MUERE El madr ejo?n desnudo ya sin una sed de aguay una luna per dida en el
fr i?o del albay el campo muer to de hambr e, pobr e como unaar an?a.El coche se
hamacaba r ezongando la altur a;un galer o?n enfa?tico, enor me, funer ar io.Cuatr o
tapaos con pinta de muer te en la negr ur a tir oneaban seis miedos y un valor
desvelado.Junto a los postillones jineteaba un mor eno.Ir en coche a la muer te ?que?
cosa ma?s or onda! El gener al Quir oga quiso entr ar en la sombr a llevando seis o
siete degollados de escolta.Esa cor dobesada bochincher a y ladina(meditaba
Quir oga) ?que? ha de poder con mi alma? Aqui? estoy afianzado y metido en la vida
como la estaca pampa bien metida en la pampa.Yo, que he sobr evivido a millar es de
tar desy cuyo nombr e pone r etemblor en las lanzas,no he de soltar la vida por estos
pedr egales. ?Muer e acaso el pamper o, se muer en las espadas?Per o al br illar el di?a
sobr e Bar r anca Yaco hier r os que no per donan ar r eciar on sobr e e?l;la muer te, que es
de todos, ar r eo? con el r iojano y una de pun?aladas lo mento? a Juan Manuel. ??
GENERAL QUIROGA RIDES TO HIS DEATH IN A CARRIAGE The water cour se dr y of puddles,
not a dr op of water left,and a moon gone out in the cold shiver of the dawn,and the
countr yside, poor as a chur ch mouse, dying of hunger .The coach swayed fr om side to
side, cr eaking up the slope;a gr eat bulk of a coach, voluminous, funer eal.Four
black hor ses with a tinge of death in their dar k coats wer e dr awing six souls in
ter r or and one wide awake and bold.Alongside the postilions a black man was
galloping.To r ide to your death in a car r iage
-- what a splendid thing to do! Gener al Quir oga had in mind to appr oach the haunts
of death taking six or seven companions with slit thr oats as escor t.That gang fr om
Co?r doba, tr oublemaker s, loud-mouthed, shifty, (Quir oga was ponder ing), now what
can they possibly do to me? Her e I am str ong, secur e, well set up in lifelike the
stake for tether ing beasts to, dr iven deep in the pampa.I, who have endur ed thr ough
thousands of after noonsand whose name alone is enough to set the lances quiver ing,
will not lay down my life in this godfor saken wilder ness. Do the winds fr om the
southwest die, by any chance? Do swor ds? But when the br ightness of day shone on
Bar r anca Yaco weapons without mer cy swooped in a r age upon him;death, which is for
all, r ounded up the man fr om La Riojaand mor e than one thr ust of the dagger invoked
Juan Manuel deRosas. ?? Ya muer to, ya de pie, ya inmor tal, ya fantasma,se pr esento?
al infier no que Dios le habi?a mar cado, y a sus o?r denes iban, r otas y desangr adas,
las a?nimas en pena de hombr es y de caballos.?? Now dead, now on his feet, now
immor tal, now a ghost,he r epor ted to the Hell mar ked out for him by God,and under
his command ther e mar ched, br oken and bloodless, the souls in pur gator y of his
soldier s and his hor ses. [Alastair Reid] ?? MONTEVIDEO Resbalo por tu tar de como el
cansancio por la piedad de un declive. La noche nueva es como un ala sobr e tus
azoteas.Er es el Buenos Air es que tuvimos, el que en los an?os se alejo?quietamente.
Er es nuestr a y fiester a, como la estr ella que duplican las aguas. Puer ta falsa en
el tiempo, tus calles mir an al pasado ma?s leve. Clar or de donde la man?ana nos
llega, sobr e las dulces aguastur bias.Antes de iluminar mi celosi?a tu bajo sol
bienaventur a tus quintas. Ciudad que se oye como un ver so.Calles con luz de patio.
?? MONTEVIDEO I slide down your evening like wear iness down a slope.The young
night is a wing over your flat r oofs.You ar e the Buenos Air es that once was our s,
that has slippedaway quietly thr ough the year s.You belong to us, festive, like a
star on the water . False door on time, your str eets seem to belong to a quieter
past. Dawnlight fr om wher e mor ning comes to us, over the sweet br own water s.Befor e
r eaching my blinds, the sunr ise has br ightened your gar dens.City that can be hear d
as a ver se. Str eets with light like a patio's. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??
MANUSCRITO HALLADO EN UN LIBRO DE JOSEPH CONRAD En las tr e?mulas tier r as que
exhalan el ver ano, El di?a es invisible de pur o blanco. El di?aEs una estr i?a cr uel
en una celosi?a,Un fulgor en las costas y una fiebr e en el llano.Per o la antigua
noche es honda como un jar r oDe agua co?ncava. El agua se abr e a infinitas huellas,
Y en ociosas canoas, de car a a las estr ellas,El hombr e mide el vago tiempo con el
cigar r o. El humo desdibuja gr is las constelacionesRemotas. Lo inmediato pier de
pr ehistor ia y nombr e. El mundo es unas cuantas tier nas impr ecisiones. El r i?o, el
pr imer r i?o. El hombr e, el pr imer hombr e. ?? MANUSCRIPT FOUND IN A BOOK OF JOSEPH
CONRAD In the shimmer ing countr ies that exude the summer , The day is blanched in
white light. The dayIs a har sh slit acr oss the window shutter ,Dazzle along the
coast, and on the plain, fever .But the ancient night is bottomless, like a jar Of
br imming water . The water r eveals limitless wakes, And in dr ifting canoes, face
inclined to the star s,Man mar ks the limp time with a cigar .The smoke blur s gr ay
acr oss the constellations Afar . The pr esent sheds past, name, and plan. The wor ld
is a few vague tepid obser vations. The r iver is the or iginal r iver . Man, the fir st
man. [Alastair Reid] ?? DAK AR Dakar esta? en la encr ucijada del sol, del desier to y
del mar .El sol nos tapa el fir mamento, el ar enal agr ava los caminos comofier a en
acecho, el mar es un encono.He visto un jefe en cuya manta er a ma?s ar diente lo
azul que enel cielo incendiado.La mezquita cer ca del bio?gr afo luce una quieta
clar idad de plegar ia. La r esolana aleja las chozas, el sol como un ladr o?n escala
los mur os. Afr ica tiene en la eter nidad su destino, donde hay hazan?as, i?dolos,
r einos, ar duos bosques y espadas.Yo he logr ado un atar decer y una aldea. ?? DAK AR
Dakar stands at the cr ossr oads of sun, sand, and sea.The sun hides the sky, the
wastes thr eaten the r oads like somelur king beast, the sea's a nest of spite.I have
seen an Ar ab chief whose blue r obes wer e mor e fier y thanthe bur ning heavens above.
The mosque by the movie house glows with a light as quiet aspr ayer .The dim shade
makes the huts r ecede, the sun scales the wallslike a thief.Afr ica's destiny is
woven of battles, idols, kingdoms, tangledfor ests, and swor ds.I have been gr anted
an evening and a village. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ?? DULCIA LINQUIMUS ARVA Una
amistad hicier on mis abueloscon esta lejani?ay conquistar on la intimidad de los
campos y ligar on a su baqui?ala tier r a, el fuego, el air e, el agua.Fuer on soldados
y estancier osy apacentar on el cor azo?n con man?anasy el hor izonte igual que una
bor dona sono? en la hondur a de su auster a jomada. Su jomada fue clar a como un r i?oy
er a fr esca su tar de como el aguaoculta del aljibey las cuatr o estaciones fuer on
par a ellos como los cuatr o ver sos de la copla esper ada. Descifr ar on lejanas
polvar edasen car r etas o en caballadasy los alegr o? el r esplandor con que aviva el
ser eno la espadan?a. Uno peleo? contr a los godos,otr o en el Par aguay canso? su
espada;todos supier on del abr azo del mundoy fue mujer sumisa a su quer er la campan?
a. Altos er an sus di?ashechos de cielo y llano.Sabidur i?a de campo afuer a la suya,
la de aquel que esta? fir me en el caballoy que r ige a los hombr es de la llanur ay
los tr abajos y los di?asy las gener aciones de los tor os. ?? DULCIA LINQUIMUS ARVA
My ancestor s str uck up a fr iendship with these distancesconquer ing the pr air ie's
closeness,and to their skill in countr y ways linked ear th and fir e and air and
water . Soldier s and r ancher s,they fed their hear ts on mor nings,and the hor izon, as
if giving back a deep note, sounded to the depths of their har d wor k andplain days.
The cour se of their long day's wor k r an clear as a str eam,their evenings wer e cool
as the water hidden in the patio well,and to them the four seasonswer e like the
lines of an expected r efr ain. In distant clouds of dust their eyes made out oxcar ts
or mustang her ds,and the splendor of the evening dew glitter ing on the cattails
could br ing them cheer .One fought the Spaniar ds,another exhausted his swor d in
Par aguay; they all felt the hold of the wor ld, and the countr y was a woman that
fell to their love. Made of sky and plain,their days wer e br oad and high.Wisdom of
wide-open spaces was their s, wisdom of the man who sits fir m in the saddle and
over sees plainsmenand their wor ks and daysand the br eeding of cattle. ?? Soy un
puebler o y ya no se? de esas cosas, soy hombr e de ciudad, de bar r io, de calle: los
tr anvi?as lejanos me ayudan la tr isteza con esa queja lar ga que sueltan en las
tar des. ?? As a town dweller I no longer know these things. I come fr om a city, a
neighbor hood, a str eet: distant str eetcar s enfor ce my nostalgiawith the wail they
let loose in the night. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ?? CASAS COMO ANGELES Donde San
Juan y Chacabuco se cr uzan vi las casas azules,vi las casas que tienen color es de
aventur a. Er an como bander asy hondas como el naciente que suelta las afuer as. Las
hay color de aur or a y las hay color de alba; su r esplandor es una pasio?n ante la
ochavade la esquina cualquier a, tur bia y desanimada. Yo pienso en las mujer esque
buscar a?n el cielo de sus patios fer vientes. Pienso en los clar os br azos que
ilustr ar a?n la tar de y en el negr or de tr enzas: pienso en la dicha gr ave de mir ar se
en sus ojos hondos, como par r ales. Empujar e? la puer ta cancel que es hier r o y patio
y habr a? una clar a nin?a, ya mi novia, en la sala,y los dos callar emos, tr e?mulos
como llamas,y la dicha pr esente se aquietar a? en pasada. ?? HOUSES LIK E ANGELS
Wher e San Juan and Chacabuco inter sect I saw the blue houses,the houses that wear
color s of adventur e. They wer e like banner sand deep as the dawn that fr ees the
outlying quar ter s. Some ar e daybr eak color and some dawn color ;their cool r adiance
is a passion befor e the oblique face of any dr ab, discour aged comer .I think of the
womenwho will be looking skywar d fr om their bur ningdoor yar ds.I think of the pale
ar ms that make evening glimmer and of the blackness of br aids: I think of the gr ave
delightof being mir r or ed in their deep eyes, like ar bor s ofnight.I will push the
gate of ir on enter ing the door yar dand ther e will be a fair gir l, alr eady mine, in
the r oom. And the two of us will hush, tr embling like flames, and the pr esent joy
will gr ow quiet in that passed. [Rober t Fitzger ald] ?? MI VIDA ENTERA Aqui? otr a
vez, los labios memor ables, u?nico y semejante a vosotr os.Soy esa tor pe intensidad
que es un alma.He per sistido en la apr oximacio?n de la dicha yen la pr ivanza del
pesar .He atr avesado el mar .He conocido muchas tier r as; he visto una mujer y dos o
tr es hombr es.He quer ido a una nin?a altiva y blanca y de unahispa?nica quietud.He
visto un ar r abal infinito donde se cumple unainsaciada inmor talidad de ponientes.He
paladeado numer osas palabr as.Cr eo pr ofundamente que eso es todo y que ni ver e?ni
ejecutar e? cosas nuevas.Cr eo que mis jomadas y mis noches se igualan enpobr eza y en
r iqueza a las de Dios y a las de todos los hombr es. ?? MY WHOLE LIFE Her e once
again the memor able lips, unique and like your s. I am this gr oping intensity that
is a soul.I have got near to happiness and have stood in the shadow ofsuffer ing.I
have cr ossed the sea.I have known many lands; I have seen one woman and two or thr ee
men.I have loved a gir l who was fair and pr oud, with a Spanishquietness.I have seen
the city's
edge, an endless spr awl wher e the sungoes down tir elessly, over and over .I have
r elished many wor ds.I believe deeply that this is all and that I will neither see
nor accomplish new things.I believe that my days and my nights, in their pover ty and
their r iches, ar e the equal of God's and of all men's. [W. S. Mer win] ?? ULTIMO SOL
EN VILLA ORTUZAR Tar de como de Juicio Final.La calle es una her ida abier ta en el
cielo.Yo no se? si fue un Angel o un ocaso la clar idad quear dio? en la hondur a.
Insistente, como una pesadilla, car ga sobr e mi? ladistancia.Al hor izonte un
alambr ado le duele.El mundo esta? como inser vible y tir ado.En el cielo es de di?a,
per o la noche es tr aicioner aen las zanjas.Toda la luz esta? en las tapias azules y
en esealbor oto de chicas.Ya no se? si es un a?r bol o es un dios, ese que asoma por
la ver ja her r umbr ada.Cua?ntos pai?ses a la vez: el campo, el cielo, las afuer as.
Hoy he sido r ico de calles y de ocaso filoso y de latar de hecha estupor .Lejos, me
devolver e? a mi pobr eza. ?? SUNSET OVER VILLA ORTUZAR Evening like Doomsday.The
str eet's end opens like a wound on the sky.Was the br ightness bur ning far away a
sunset or an angel? Relentless, like a nightmar e, the distance weighs on me. The
hor izon is tor mented by a wir e fence.The wor ld is like something useless, thr own
away.It is still day in the sky, but night is lur king in the gullies. All that is
left of the light is in the blue-washed walls and inthat flock of gir ls.Now is it a
tr ee or a god ther e, showing thr ough the r ustedgate?So many ter r ains at once: the
countr y, the sky, the thr eadbar eoutskir ts.Ther e wer e tr easur es today: str eets,
whetted sunset, the daze ofevening.Far fr om her e, I shall sink again to my pover ty.
[W. S. Mer win] ?? San Mar ti?n Copybook Cuader no San Mar ti?n???? As to an occasional
copy of ver ses, ther e ar e few men who have leisur e to r ead, and ar e pos- sessed of
any music in their souls, who ar e not capable of ver sifying on some ten or twelve
oc- casions dur ing their natur al lives: at a pr oper conjunction of the star s. Ther e
is no har m in taking advantage of such occasions. EDWARD FITZGERALD in a letter to
Ber nar d Bar ton (????) FUNDACION MITICA DE BUENOS AIRES ?Y fue por este r i?o de
suen?er a y de bar r o que las pr oas vinier on a fundar me la patr ia? Ir i?an a los
tumbos los bar quitos pintados entr e los camalotes de la cor r iente zaina.Pensando
bien la cosa, supondr emos que el r i?o er a azulejo entonces como or iundo del cielo
con su estr ellita r oja par a mar car el sitioen que ayuno? Juan Di?az y los indios
comier on.Lo cier to es que mil hombr es y otr os mil ar r ibar on por un mar que teni?a
cinco lunas de anchur ay aun estaba poblado de sir enas y endr iagosy de piedr as
imanes que enloquecen la br u?jula.Pr endier on unos r anchos tr e?mulos en la costa,
dur mier on extr an?ados. Dicen que en el Riachuelo, per o son embelecos fr aguados en
la Boca. Fue una manzana enter a y en mi bar r io: en Paler mo. Una manzana enter a per o
en mita? del campo pr esenciada de aur or as y lluvias y suestadas. La manzana par eja
que per siste en mi bar r io: Guatemala, Ser r ano, Par aguay, Gur r uchaga.Un almace?n
r osado como r eve?s de naipe br illo? y en la tr astienda conver sar on un tr uco; el
almace?n r osado flor ecio? en un compadr e, ya patr o?n de la esquina, ya r esentido y
dur o. ?o THE MYTHICAL FOUNDING OF BUENOS AIRES And was it along this tor pid muddy
r iver that the pr ows came to found my native city?The little painted boats must have
suffer ed the steep sur f among the r oot-clumps of the hor se-br own cur r ent.Ponder ing
well, let us suppose that the r iver was blue then like an extension of the sky,
with a small r ed star inset to mar k the spot wher e Juan Di?az fasted and the
Indians dined.But for sur e a thousand men and other thousands ar r ived acr oss a sea
that was five moons wide,still infested with mer maids and sea ser pentsand magnetic
boulder s which sent the compass wild.On the coast they put up a few r amshackle huts
and slept uneasily. This, they claim, in the Riachuelo, but that is a stor y dr eamed
up in the Boca.It was r eally a city block in my distr ict--Paler mo.A whole squar e
block, but set down in open countr y, attended by dawns and r ains and har d
southeaster s, identical to that block which still stands in myneighbor hood:
Guatemala--Ser r ano--Par aguay--Gur r uchaga.A gener al stor e pink as the back of a
playing car d shone br ight; in the back ther e was poker talk. The comer bar flower ed
into life as a local bully, alr eady cock of his walk, r esentful, tough. ?? El
pr imer or ganito salvaba el hor izontecon su achacoso por te, su habaner a y su gr ingo.
El cor r alo?n segur o ya opinaba Yr igoyen, algu?n piano mandaba tangos de Sabor ido.
Una cigar r er i?a sahumo? como una r osael desier to. La tar de se habi?a ahondado en
ayer es, los hombr es compar tier on un pasado ilusor io. So?lo falto? una cosa: la
ver eda de enfr ente.A mi? se me hace cuento que empezo? Buenos Air es: La juzgo tan
eter na como el agua y el air e. ?? The fir st bar r el or gan teeter ed over the hor izon
with its clumsy pr ogr ess, its habaner as, its wop.The car t-shed wall was unanimous
for Yr igoyen. Some piano was banging out tangos by Sabor ido.A cigar stor e per fumed
the deser t like a r ose.The after noon had established its yester days,and men took on
together an illusor y past.Only one thing was missing--the str eet had no other side.
Har d to believe Buenos Air es had any beginning. I feel it to be as eter nal as air
and water .[Alastair Reid] ?? ISIDORO ACEVEDO Es ver dad que lo ignor o todo sobr e e?
l--salvo los nombr es de lugar y las fechas:fr audes de la palabr a--per o con temer osa
piedad he r escatado su u?ltimo di?a, no el que los otr os vier on, el suyo,y quier o
distr aer me de mi destino par a escr ibir lo.Adicto a la conver sacio?n por ten?a del
tr uco,alsinista nacido del buen lado del Ar r oyo del Medio, comisar io de fr utos del
pai?s en el mer cado antiguodel Once,comisar io de la ter cer a,se batio? cuando Buenos
Air es lo quisoen Cepeda, en Pavo?n y en la playa de los Cor r ales.Per o mi voz no
debe asumir sus batallas, por que e?l las ar r ebato? a un suen?o esencial.Por que lo
mismo que otr os hombr es escr iben ver sos, hizo mi abuelo un suen?o.Cuando una
congestio?n pulmonar lo estaba ar r asando y la inventiva fiebr e le falseo? la car a
del di?a,congr ego? los ar dientes documentos de su memor ia par a fr aguar su suen?o.
Esto acontecio? en una casa de la calle Ser r ano, en el ver ano ar dido del
novecientos cinco. ?? ISIDORO ACEVEDO The tr uth is that I know nothing about him
except for place names and dates--fr auds and failings of the wor d--and so with a
cer tain mixtur e of hesitation and compassionI have r escued his last day,not the one
that other s saw but his own,and I want to sidestep my own life now to wr ite about
his.Inveter ate car dplayer and habitue? of Buenos Air es backr ooms,bor n on the r ight
side of the Ar r oyo del Medio and a follower of Alsina,inspector of native pr oduce
in the old Westside mar kets, police inspector of the thir d distr ict,when his
homeland called him up he foughtin the battles at Cepeda and Pavo?n and the
Stockyar d flats.But my wor ds should not take up his battleswhen the vision he
wr ested fr om them was so much his own.For in the same way that other men wr ite
ver se my gr andfather elabor ated a dr eam.While a lung ailment ate away at himand
hallucinator y fever s distor ted the face of the day, he assembled the bur ning
documents of his memor y for the for ging of his dr eam.This took place in a house on
Ser r ano Str eet dur ing that bur nt-out summer of ????. ?? Son?o? con dos eje?r citos
que entr aban en la sombr a de una batalla; enumer o? los comandos, las bander as, las
unidades."Ahor a esta?n par lamentando los jefes", dijo en voz que le oyer ony quiso
incor por ar se par a ver los.Hizo leva de pampa:vio ter r eno quebr ado par a que pudier a
afer r ar se lainfanter i?ay llanur a r esuelta par a que el tir o?n de la caballer i?a
fuer ainvencible.Hizo una leva u?ltima,congr ego? los miles de r ostr os que el hombr e
sabe sin saber despue?s de los an?os:car as de bar ba que se estar a?n desvaneciendo en
daguer r otipos, car as que vivier on junto a la suya en el Puente Alsina yCepeda.
Entr o? a saco en sus di?aspar a esa visionar ia patr iada que necesitaba su fe, no que
unaflaqueza le impuso;junto? un eje?r cito de sombr as por ten?aspar a que lo matar an.
Asi?, en el dor mitor io que mir aba al jar di?n, mur io? en un suen?o por la patr ia.En
meta?for a de viaje me dijer on su muer te; no la cr ei?. Yo er a chico, yo no sabi?a
entonces de muer te, yo er ainmor tal;yo lo busque? por muchos di?as por los cuar tos
sin luz.?? His dr eam was of two ar miesenter ing the shadow of battle;he enumer ated
the commands, the color s, the units."Now the officer s ar e r eviewing their battle
plans," he said in a voice you could hear ,and in or der to see them he tr ied sitting
up.He seized a str etch of the pr air ie,scouting it for br oken ter r ain, wher e the
infantr y could holdtheir gr ound,and for a flat place so that the cavalr y char ge
could not betur ned back.He made a final levy,r allying the thousands of faces that a
man knows without r eallyknowing at the end of his year s:bear ded faces now gr owing
dim in daguer r eotypes,faces that lived and died next to his own at the battles of
PuenteAlsina and Cepeda.In the visionar y defense of his countr y that his faith
hunger ed for (and not that his fever imposed),he plunder ed his daysand r ounded up
an ar my of Buenos Air es ghosts so as to get himself killed in the fighting.That was
how, in a bedr oom that looked onto the gar den, he died out of devotion for his
city.It was in the metaphor of a jour ney that I was told of his death, and I did
not believe it.I was a boy, who knew nothing then of dying; I was immor tal, and
after war d for days I sear ched the sunless r ooms for him. [Nor man Thomas di
Giovanni] ?? LA NOCHE QUE EN EL SUR LO VELARON A Letizia
Alvar ez de ToledoPor el deceso de alguien--mister io cuyo vacante nombr e poseo y
cuya r ealidadno abar camos--hay hasta el alba una casa abier ta en el Sur ,una
ignor ada casa que no estoy destinado a r ever , per o que me esper a esta nochecon
desvelada luz en las altas hor as del suen?o, demacr ada de malas noches, distinta,
minuciosa de r ealidad.A su vigilia gr avitada en muer te caminopor las calles
elementales como r ecuer dos,por el tiempo abundante de la noche,sin ma?s oi?ble vida
que los vagos hombr es de bar r io junto al apagado almace?n y algu?n silbido solo en
el mundo.Lento el andar , en la posesio?n de la esper a,llego a la cuadr a y a la casa
y a la sincer a puer ta que busco y me r eciben hombr es obligados a gr avedadque
par ticipar on de los an?os de mis mayor es,y nivelamos destinos en una pieza
habilitada que mir a alpatio--patio que esta? bajo el poder y en la integr idad de la
noche--y decimos, por que la r ealidad es mayor , cosasindifer entesy somos desganados
y ar gentinos en el espejo y el mate compar tido mide hor as vanas. ?? DEATHWATCH ON
THE SOUTHSIDE To Letizia Alvar ez de ToledoBy r eason, of someone's death--a myster y
whose empty name I know and whose r eality isbeyond us--a house on the Southside
stands open until dawn, unfamiliar to me, and not to be seen again,but waiting for
me this nightwith a wakeful light in the deep hour s of sleep--a house wasted away
by bad nights and wor n shar p into a fineness of r eality.Towar d its weighty
deathwatch I make my way thr ough str eets elementar y as memor ies, thr ough time gr own
pur e in plenitude of night, with no mor e life to be hear dthan neighbor hood
loiter er s make near a comer stor e and a whistler somewher e, lonely in the
nightwor ld.In my slow walk, in my expectancy,I r each the block, the house, the
plain door I am looking for , wher e men constr ained to gr avity r eceive me,men who
had a par t in my elder s' year s,and we size up our destinies in a tidied r oom
over lookingthe yar d,a yar d that is under the power and wholeness of night:and we
speak of indiffer ent things, r eality her e being gr eater , and in the mir r or we ar e
Ar gentine, apathetic,and the shar ed mate? measur es out useless hour s. ?? Me
conmueven las menudas sabidur i?asque en todo fallecimiento de hombr e se pier den
--ha?bito de unos libr os, de una llave, de un cuer po entr elos otr os--fr ecuencias
ir r ecuper ables que par a e?lfuer on la amistad de este mundo.Yo se? que todo
pr ivilegio, aunque oscur o, es de linaje demilagr oy mucho lo es el de par ticipar en
esta vigilia,r eunida alr ededor de lo que no se sabe: del Muer to, r eunida par a
incomunicar o guar dar su pr imer a noche enla muer te.(El velor io gasta las car as;los
ojos se nos esta?n mur iendo en lo alto como Jesu?s.)?Y el muer to, el incr ei?ble?Su
r ealidad esta? bajo las flor es difer entes de e?ly su mor tal hospitalidad nos dar a?
un r ecuer do ma?s par a el tiempoy sentenciosas calles del Sur par a mer ecer las
despacio y br isa oscur a sobr e la fr ente que vuelvey la noche que de la mayor
congoja nos libr a:la pr olijidad de lo r eal.?? I am touched by the fr ail wisdoms
lost in ever y man's death--his habit of books, of a key, of one bodyamong the
other s--ir r ecover able r hythms that for himcomposed the fr iendliness of this wor ld.I
know that ever y pr ivilege, however obscur e, is in the line ofmir acles,and her e is a
gr eat one: to take par t in this vigil, gather ed ar ound a being no one knows--the
Dead; gather ed to set him apar t or guar d him, his fir st night in death. (Faces gr ow
haggar d with watching:our eyes ar e dying on the height like Jesus.)And the dead
man, the unbelievable?His r eality r emains under the alien r eality of flower s,and
his hospitality in death will give usone memor y mor e for timeand gr aven str eets on
the Southside, one by one to be savor ed, and a dar k br eeze in my face as I walk
home,and night that fr ees us fr om that or deal by wear iness,the daily r ound of the
r eal. [Rober t Fitzger ald] ?? MUERTES DE BUENOS AIRES I. LA CHACARITAPor que la
entr an?a del cementer io del Sur fue saciada por la fiebr e amar illa hasta decir
basta;por que los conventillos hondos del Sur mandar on muer te sobr e la car a de Buenos
Air esy por que Buenos Air es no pudo mir ar esa muer te,a paladas te abr ier onen la
punta per dida del oeste,detr a?s de las tor mentas de tier r ay del bar r ial pesado y
pr imitivo que hizo a los cuar teador es. Alli? no habi?a ma?s que el mundoy las
costumbr es de las estr ellas sobr e unas chacr as,y el tr en sali?a de un galpo?n en
Ber mejocon los olvidos de la muer te:muer tos de bar ba der r umbada y ojos en vela,
muer tas de car ne desalmada y sin magia.Tr apacer i?as de la muer te--sucia como el
nacimiento del hombr e--siguen multiplicando tu subsuelo y asi? r eclutas tu
conventillo de a?nimas, tu montoner a clandestina de huesos que caen al fondo de tu
noche enter r adalo mismo que a la hondur a de un mar ,hacia una muer te sin
inmor talidad y sin honr a.Una dur a vegetacio?n de sobr as en penahace fuer za contr a
tus par edones inter minables cuyo sentido es per dicio?n,y convencido de
cor r uptibilidad el subur bioapur a su caliente vida a tus piesen calles tr aspasadas
por una llamar ada baja de bar r o ?? DEATHS OF BUENOS AIRES I. LA CHACARITAWhen the
Southside's gr aveyar ds, cr ammed full of yellow fever , cr ied out of their depths:
Enough, when the Southside's cluster ing tenementsspr ead death on the face of the
cityuntil Buenos Air es could look at the car nage no longer , shovel by shovel, they
opened you upon the city's ver ge wher e the west dr ops away--behind dust stor msand a
weight of pr imor dial muck left behind for the teamster s. Ther e was only the wor ld
with its habit of star s r ising over a handful of far ms,and tr ains leaving their
sheds in Ber mejowith the gone-and-for gotten:dead eyes of men keeping watch in
unshaven dishevelment, dead gir ls, despoiled and unbeautiful flesh, without magic.
The fr auds of mor tality--stained as in childbir th--still fatten your subsoil; so
you muster up soulsfor your compounds, for your hidden contingent of bones dr opped
into holes or bur ied away in your nightas if dr owned in the depths of a sea,
pr epar ing a death without hope of eter nity, without honor .A har d vegetation,
pur gator ial r ubbishinur ed to damnation,batter s your long line of wallsas though
nothing wer e sur e but cor r uption; a slum hur ls its fier y life at your feetin
gutter s shot thr ough with a low flame of mud, ?? o se atur de con desgano de
bandoneoneso con balidos de cometas sonsas en car naval.(El fallo de destino ma?s
par a siempr e,que dur a en mi? lo escuche? esa noche en tu noche cuando la guitar r a
bajo la mano del or iller odijo lo mismo que las palabr as, y ellas deci?an:La muer te
es vida vivida,la vida es muer te que viene.)Mono del cementer io, la Quemagesticula
advenediza muer te a tus pies.Gastamos y enfer mamos la r ealidad: ??? car r os infaman
las man?anas, llevandoa esa necr o?polis de humolas cotidianas cosas que hemos
contagiado de muer te.Cu?pulas estr afalar ias de mader a y cr uces en alto se mueven--
piezas negr as de un ajedr ez final--por tus callesy su achacosa majestad va
encubr iendo las ver gu?enzas de nuestr as muer tes.En tu disciplinado r ecintola muer te
es incolor a, hueca, nume?r ica; se disminuye a fechas y nombr es, muer tes de la
palabr a.Chacar ita:desaguader o de esta patr ia de Buenos Air es, cuesta final, bar r io
que sobr evives a los otr os, que sobr emuer es, lazar eto que esta?s en esta muer te no
en la otr a vida, ?? or stands, dazed and unwilling, in the sound of accor dions or
the bleating of car nival hor ns.(The destiny given me now, the judgment that nothing
can alter , I hear d on that night, in your night,when the guitar and the wor ds
joined under the hands of the player --one of the dispossessed poor who lives out
his life on the fr inges--and the two sang as one:Death is life lived away, life is
death coming on.)Cr emator of all and mimic of gr aveyar ds,La Quema summons that
gar bage of death to sit at your feet, a passing intr uder .We exhaust and infect all
r eality: ??? car tloads a dayto outr age the mor nings, on their wayto this smoking
necr opoliswith a waste of quotidian things we have fouled with mor tality.Funer al
coaches with their nondescr ipt cupolas of wood, and r aised cr ossesmove thr ough your
str eets--black pawns on an ultimate chessboar d--whose fester ing pomp cover s over the
shame of our dying.In the tidy enclavesof your gr aveyar ds, death keeps color less,
void, and statistical, subsides into bir th dates and family names,the dying away of
the wor d.Chacar ita:sink of a nation, Buenos Air es sloping away to the end, bar r io
outliving all other s, or outdying them, pesthouse of our death, not of a life yet
to come, ?? he oi?do tu palabr a de caducidad y no cr eo en ella,por que tu misma
conviccio?n de tr agedia es acto de viday por que la plenitud de una sola r osa es ma?
s que tus ma?r moles. II. LA RECOLETAAqui? es pundonor osa la muer te,aqui? es la
r ecatada muer te por ten?a,la consangui?nea de la dur ader a luz ventur osa del atr io
del Socor r oy de la ceniza minuciosa de los br aser osy del fino dulce de leche de los
cumplean?osy de las hondas dinasti?as de patios.Se acuer dan bien con ellaesas
viejas dulzur as y tambie?n los viejos r igor es.Tu fr ente es el po?r tico valer osoy la
gener osidad de ciego del a?r boly la diccio?n de pa?jar os que aluden, sin saber la, a
la muer te y el r edoble, endiosador de pechos, de los tambor esen los entier r os
militar es;tu espalda, los ta?citos conventillos del Nor tey el par edo?n de las
ejecuciones r osistas.Cr ece en disolucio?n bajo los sufr agios de ma?r molla nacio?n
ir r epr esentable de muer tosque se deshumanizar on en tu tiniebladesde que Mar i?a de
los Dolor es Maciel, nin?a del Ur uguay --simiente de tu jar di?n par a el cielo--se
dur mio?, tan poca cosa, en tu descampado.Per o yo quier o demor ar me en el pensamiento
de las livianas flor es que son tu comentar io
piadoso ?? I have hear d all your dodder ing wor ds and believe none of them; your
insistence on tr agedy is enough to confir m all our living, and one r ose in its
bounty exceeds all your mar ble.II. LA RECOLETADeath is scr upulous her e; her e, in
this city of por ts, death is cir cumspect:a blood-kinship of endur ing and pr ovident
light r eaching out fr om the cour ts of the Socor r o,fr om the ash bur nt to bits in the
br azier s, to the sugar -and-milk of a holiday tr eat and a depth of patios like a
dynasty.Old sweetnesses, old r igor s meetand ar e one in the gr aveyar ds of La
Recoleta.At your summit, the por tico's br aver y,a tr ee's blind solicitude,bir ds
pr attling of death without ever suspecting it,a r uffle of dr ums fr om the veter ans'
bur ial plotto hear ten the bypasser ;at your shoulder , hidden away, the tenements of
the Nor thside, the walls of the executioner , Rosas.Her e a nation of unr epr esentable
deadthr ives on decay under a suffr age of mar ble,since the day that the ear liest
seed in your gar den,destined for heaven,Ur uguay's child,Mar i?a de los Dolor es
Maciel, dr opped off to sleep-- the least of your bur ied--in your waste desolation.
Her e something holds me: I thinkof the fatuous flower s that speak out so piously
now inyour name--?? --suelo amar illo bajo las acacias de tu costado, flor es izadas
a conmemor acio?n en tus mausoleos-- y en el por que? de su vivir gr acioso y dor mido
junto a las ter r ibles r eliquias de los que amamos.Dije el pr oblema y dir e? tambie?n
su palabr a: Siempr e las flor es vigilar on la muer te, por que siempr e los hombr es
incompr ensiblemente supimos que su existir dor mido y gr aciosoes el que mejor puede
acompan?ar a los que mur ier on sin ofender los con sober bia de vida,sin ser ma?s vida
que ellos. ?? the leaf-yellow clay under the fr inge of acacia, memor ial wr eaths
lifted up in your family cr ypts-- why do they stay her e, in their sleepy and
delicate way, side by side with the ter r ible keepsakes of those whomwe loved?I put
the har d question and ventur e an answer : our flower s keep per petual watch on the
dead because we all incompr ehensibly knowthat their sleepy and delicate pr esence is
all we can offer the dead to take with them in their dying, without giving offense
thr ough the pr ide of our living or seeming mor e alive than the dead. [Ben Belitt]
?? A FRANCISCO LOPEZ MERINO Si te cubr iste, por deliber ada mano, de muer te,si tu
voluntad fue r ehusar todas las man?anas del mundo, es inu?til que palabr as
r echazadas te soliciten, pr edestinadas a imposibilidad y a der r ota.So?lo nos queda
entoncesdecir el deshonor de las r osas que no supier on demor ar te, el opr obio del
di?a que te per mitio? el balazo y el fin.?Que? sabr a? oponer nuestr a voza lo
confir mado por la disolucio?n, la la?gr ima, el ma?r mol? Per o hay ter nur as que por
ninguna muer te son menos--las i?ntimas, indescifr ables noticias que nos cuenta la
mu?sica, la patr ia que condesciende a higuer a y aljibe,la ar diente gr avitacio?n del
amor que justifica el alma--los car gados minutospor los que se salva el honor de la
r ealidad.Pienso en ellos y pienso tambie?n, amigo escondido,que tal vez a imagen de
la pr edileccio?n, obr amos la muer te, que la supiste de campanas, nin?a y gr aciosa,
her mana de tu aplicada letr a de colegial,y que hubier as quer ido distr aer te en ella
como en un suen?o en el que hay olvido del mundo, per o amistoso,en donde es
bendecidor todo olvido. ?o TO FRANCISCO LOPEZ MERINO If, by your own hand, you
br ought death on your self,if it was your wish to r eject all the mor nings of this
wor ld, these contr adictor y wor ds summon you now to no pur pose, doomed as they ar e
to impossibility and failur e.Then all that is left usis to speak of the r oses'
dishonor that found no way ofdetaining you,the oppr obr ious day that gave you the
gunshot and the end.How can our voicesgainsay what dissolution, the tear -dr op, the
mar bleconfir med for us?For sur ely something is left of our tender ness no death can
diminish--the indecipher able, intimate news that music confides to us,a countr y
par ed down to its essence: a fig tr ee and a patio well, the bur ning gr avitation of
love to which our souls bear witness-- the weighted minutesby which r eality's honor
is salvaged again.I think of them now, my r econdite fr iend, I think that per haps we
contr ive our own deaths with images of our choosing,that you knew it alr eady, full
of bells, childlike and gr aceful, a sister of your schoolboy's painstaking hand,
that you might even have thought to humor your self withyour death, like a dr eamthat
br ings for getfulness of the wor ld, but in a comr adely way, wher e all oblivion
blesses us. ?? Si esto es ver dad y si cuando el tiempo nos deja, nos queda un
sedimento de eter nidad, un gusto del mundo, entonces es liger a tu muer te,como los
ver sos en que siempr e esta?s esper a?ndonos, entonces no pr ofanar a?n tu tiniebla
estas amistades que invocan. ?? If that is the sense of it, and if when time leaves
us behind a gr ain of eter nity clings to us, an after taste of the wor ld, then your
death weighs mor e lightly,light as the ver se wher ein you still wait for us always,
and the comr adeship that calls to you nowno longer pr ofanes your shadow. [Ben
Belitt] ?? The Self and the Other El otr o, el mismo TWO ENGLISH POEMS To Beatr iz
Bibiloni Webster de Bullr ichIThe useless dawn finds me in a deser ted Str eet-
cor ner ; I have outlived the night.Nights ar e pr oud waves: dar kblue topheavy waves
laden with all hues of deep spoil, laden with things unlikely and desir able.Nights
have a habit of myster ious gifts and r e- fusals, of things half given away, half
with- held, of joys with a dar k hemispher e. Nights act that way, I tell you. The
sur ge, that night, left me the customar y shr eds and odd ends: some hated fr iends to
chat with, music for dr eams, and the smoking of bitter ashes. The things my hungr y
hear t has no use for . The big wave br ought you.Wor ds, any wor ds, your laughter ; and
you solazily and incessantly beautiful. We talkedand you have for gotten the wor ds.
The shatter ing dawn finds me in a deser tedstr eet of my city.Your pr ofile tur ned
away, the sounds that go tomake your name, the lilt of your laughter :these ar e the
illustr ious toys you have left me.I tur n them over in the dawn, I lose them, I find
them; I tell them to the few str ay dogsand to the few str ay star s of the dawn.Your
dar k r ich life . . .I must get at you, somehow: I put away thoseillustr ious toys
you have left me, I want your hidden look, your r eal smile--that lonely, mocking
smile your cool mir r or knows. ?? IIWhat can I hold you with?I offer you lean
str eets, desper ate sunsets, themoon of the r agged subur bs.I offer you the
bitter ness of a man who haslooked long and long at the lonely moon. I offer you my
ancestor s, my dead men, the ghosts that living men have honour ed in mar ble: my
father 's father killed in the fr ontier of Buenos Air es, two bullets thr ough his
lungs, bear ded and dead, wr apped by his soldier s in the hide of a cow; my mother 's
gr and- father --just twentyfour --heading a char ge of thr ee hundr ed men in Per u?, now
ghosts on vanished hor ses.I offer you whatever insight my books may hold, whatever
manliness or humour my life.I offer you the loyalty of a man who has never been
loyal.I offer you that ker nel of myself that I havesaved, somehow--the centr al
hear t that deals not in wor ds, tr affics not with dr eams and is untouched by time,
by joy, by adver sities.I offer you the memor y of a yellow r ose seen at sunset,
year s befor e you wer e bor n.I offer you explanations of your self, theor ies about
your self, authentic and sur pr ising news of your - self.I can give you my loneliness,
my dar kness, the hunger of my hear t; I am tr ying to br ibe you with uncer tainty,
with danger , with defeat.???? ?? LA NOCHE CICLICA A Sylvina Bullr ichLo supier on
los ar duos alumnos de Pita?gor as: Los astr os y los hombr es vuelven ci?clicamente;
Los a?tomos fatales r epetir a?n la ur gente Afr odita de or o, los tebanos, las a?
gor as.En edades futur as opr imir a? el centaur oCon el casco soli?pedo el pecho del
lapita; Cuando Roma sea polvo, gemir a? en la infinita Noche de su palacio fe?tido
el minotaur o.Volver a? toda noche de insomnio: minuciosa.La mano que esto escr ibe
r enacer a? del mismo Vientr e. Fe?r r eos eje?r citos constr uir a?n el abismo. (David
Hume de Edimbur go dijo la misma cosa.)No se? si volver emos en un ciclo segundoComo
vuelven las cifr as de una fr accio?n per io?dica; Per o se? que una oscur a r otacio?n
pitago?r icaNoche a noche me deja en un lugar del mundoQue es de los ar r abales. Una
esquina r emota Que puede ser del nor te, del sur o del oeste, Per o que tiene siempr e
una tapia celeste, Una higuer a sombr i?a y una ver eda r ota.Ahi? esta? Buenos Air es.
El tiempo, que a los hombr es Tr ae el amor o el or o, a mi? apenas me dejaEsta r osa
apagada, esta vana madejaDe calles que r epiten los pr ete?r itos nombr es ?? THE
CYCLICAL NIGHT To Sylvina Bullr ichThey knew it, the fer vent pupils of Pythagor as:
That star s and men r evolve in a cycle,That fateful atoms will br ing back the vital
Gold Aphr odite, Thebans, and agor as.In futur e epochs the centaur will oppr essWith
solid uncleft hoof the br east of the Lapith; When Rome is dust the Minotaur will
moan Once mor e in the endless dar k of its r ank palace.Ever y sleepless night will
come back in minute Detail. This wr iting hand will be bor n fr om the same Womb, and
bitter ar mies contr ive their doom. (Edinbur gh's David Hume made this ver y point.)I
do not know if we will r ecur in a second Cycle, like number s in a per iodic
fr action; But I know that a vague Pythagor ean r otation Night after night sets me
down in the wor ldOn the outskir ts of this city. A r emote str eet Which might be
either nor th or west or south, But always with a blue-washed wall, the shade Of a
fig tr ee, and a sidewalk of br oken concr ete.This, her e, is Buenos Air es. Time,
which br ings Either love or money to men, hands on to me Only this wither ed r ose,
this empty tr acer yOf str eets with names r ecur r ing fr om the past ?? De mi sangr e:
Lapr ida, Cabr er a, Soler , Sua?r ez . . . Nombr es en que r etumban (ya secr etas) las
dianas, Las r epu?blicas, los caballos y las man?anas,Las felices victor ias, las
muer tes militar es.Las plazas agr avadas por la noche sin duen?o Son los patios
pr ofundos de un a?r ido palacio Y las calles una?nimes que engendr an el espacio Son
cor r edor es de vago miedo y de suen?o.Vuelve la noche co?ncava que descifr o? Anaxa?
gor as; Vuelve a mi car ne humana la eter nidad constanteY el r ecuer do ?el pr oyecto?
de un poema incesante: "Lo supier on los ar duos alumnos de Pita?gor as . . ."??????
In my blood: Lapr ida, Cabr er a, Soler , Sua?r ez . . . Names in which secr et bugle
calls ar e sounding, Invoking r epublics, cavalr y, and mor nings,Joyful victor ies, men
dying in action.Squar es weighed down by a night in no one's car e Ar e the vast
patios of an empty palace,And the single-minded str eets cr eating spaceAr e cor r idor s
for sleep and nameless fear .It r etur ns, the hollow dar k of Anaxagor as; In my human
flesh, eter nity keeps r ecur r ing And the memor y, or plan, of an endless poem
beginning: "They knew it, the fer vent pupils of Pythagor as . . ." [Alastair Reid]
?? POEMA CONJETURAL El doctor Fr ancisco Lapr ida, asesinadoel di?a ?? de setiembr e
de ???? por los montoner os de Aldao, piensa antes de mor ir :Zumban las balas en la
tar de u?ltima.Hay viento y hay cenizas en el viento,se disper san el di?a y la
batalladefor me, y la victor ia es de los otr os. Vencen los ba?r bar os, los gauchos
vencen. Yo, que estudie? las leyes y los ca?nones, yo, Fr ancisco Nar ciso de
Lapr ida,cuya voz declar o? la independenciade estas cr ueles pr ovincias, der r otado,de
sangr e y de sudor manchado el r ostr o, sin esper anza ni temor , per dido,huyo hacia el
Sur por ar r abales u?ltimos.Como aquel capita?n del Pur gator ioque, huyendo a pie y
ensangr entando el llano, fue cegado y tumbado por la muer tedonde un oscur o r i?o
pier de el nombr e,asi? habr e? de caer . Hoy es el te?r mino.La noche later al de los
pantanosme acecha y me demor a. Oigo los cascosde mi caliente muer te que me buscacon
jinetes, con belfos y con lanzas.Yo que anhele? ser otr o, ser un hombr e de
sentencias, de libr os, de dicta?menes, a cielo abier to yacer e? entr e cie?nagas;
per o me endiosa el pecho inexplicable un ju?bilo secr eto. Al fin me encuentr o ??
CONJECTURAL POEM Doctor Fr ancisco Lapr ida, set upon and killed the ??nd of
September ???? by a band ofgaucho militia ser ving under Aldao, r eflects befor e he
dies:Bullets whip the air this last after noon.A wind is up, blowing full of cinder s
as the day and this chaotic battlestr aggle to a close. The gauchos have won:
victor y is their s, the bar bar ians'.I, Fr ancisco Nar ciso Lapr ida,who studied both
canon law and civiland whose voice declar ed the independence of this entir e untamed
ter r itor y,in defeat, my face mar ked by blood and sweat, holding neither hope nor
fear , the way lost, str ike out for the South thr ough the back countr y. Like that
captain in Pur gator iowho fleeing on foot left blood on the plain and was blinded
and then tr ampled by death wher e an obscur e r iver loses its name,so I too will
fall. Today is the end.The night and to r ight and left the mar shes-- in ambush,
clogging my steps. I hear the hooves of my own hot death r iding me down with
hor semen, fr othing muzzles, and lances.I who longed to be someone else, to weigh
judgments, to r ead books, to hand down the law, will lie in the open out in these
swamps;but a secr et joy somehow swells my br east.I see at last that I am face to
face ?? con mi destino sudamer icano.A esta r uinosa tar de me llevabael laber into mu?
ltiple de pasosque mis di?as tejier on desde un di?a de la nin?ez. Al fin he
descubier to la r eco?ndita clave de mis an?os,la suer te de Fr ancisco de Lapr ida,la
letr a que faltaba, la per fectafor ma que supo Dios desde el pr incipio. En el espejo
de esta noche alcanzomi insospechado r ostr o eter no. El ci?r culo se va a cer r ar . Yo
aguar do que asi? sea.Pisan mis pies la sombr a de las lanzasque me buscan. Las befas
de mi muer te, los jinetes, las cr ines, los caballos,se cier nen sobr e mi? . . . Ya
el pr imer golpe, ya el dur o hier r o que me r aja el pecho,el i?ntimo cuchillo en la
gar ganta.???? ?? with my South Amer ican destiny.I was car r ied to this r uinous hour
by the intr icate labyr inth of steps woven by my days fr om a day that goes back to
my bir th. At last I've discover ed the myster ious key to all my year s,the fate of
Fr ancisco de Lapr ida,the missing letter , the per fect patter nthat was known to God
fr om the beginning. In this night's mir r or I can compr ehendmy unsuspected tr ue
face. The cir cle'sabout to close. I wait to let it come.My feet tr ead the shadows
of the lancesthat spar for the kill. The taunts of my death, the hor ses, the
hor semen, the hor ses' manes, tighten the r ing ar ound me. . . . Now the fir st blow,
the lance's har d steel r ipping my chest, and acr oss my thr oat the intimate knife.
[Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ?? A UN POETA MENOR DE LA ANTOLOGIA?Do?nde esta? la
memor ia de los di?asque fuer on tuyos en la tier r a, y tejier on dicha y dolor y
fuer on par a ti el univer so?El r i?o numer able de los an?oslos ha per dido; er es una
palabr a en un i?ndice.Dier on a otr os glor ia inter minable los dioses,inscr ipciones y
exer gos y monumentos y puntuales histor iador es; de ti so?lo sabemos, oscur o amigo,
que oi?ste al r uisen?or , una tar de.Entr e los asfodelos de la sombr a, tu vana sombr a
pensar a? que los dioses han sido avar os.Per o los di?as son una r ed de tr iviales
miser ias, ?y habr a? suer te mejor que ser la cenizade que esta? hecho el olvido?
Sobr e otr os ar r ojar on los diosesla inexor able luz de la glor ia, que mir a las
entr an?as y enumer a lasgr ietas,de la glor ia, que acaba por ajar la r osa que vener a;
contigo fuer on ma?s piadosos, her mano.En el e?xtasis de un atar decer que no ser a?
una noche, oyes la voz del r uisen?or de Teo?cr ito. ?? TO A MINOR POET OF THE GREEK
ANTHOLOGY Wher e now is the memor yof the days that wer e your s on ear th, and wovejoy
with sor r ow, and made a univer se that was your own? The r iver of year s has lost
themfr om its number ed cur r ent; you ar e a wor d in an index.To other s the gods gave
glor y that has no end:inscr iptions, names on coins, monuments, conscientious
histor ians; all that we know of you, eclipsed fr iend,is that you hear d the
nightingale one evening.Among the asphodels of the Shadow, your shade, in its
vanity, must consider the gods ungener ous.But the days ar e a web of small tr oubles,
and is ther e a gr eater blessingthan to be the ash of which oblivion is made?Above
other heads the gods kindledthe inexor able light of glor y, which peer s into the
secr et par tsand discover s each separ ate fault;glor y, that at last shr ivels the r ose
it r ever es; they wer e mor e consider ate with you, br other .In the r apt evening that
will never be nightyou listen without end to Theocr itus' nightingale. [W. S.
Mer win] ?? PAGINA PARA RECORDAR AL CORONEL SUAREZ, VENCEDOR EN JUNIN Que? impor tan
las penur ias, el destier r o,la humillacio?n de envejecer , la sombr a cr ecientedel
dictador sobr e la patr ia, la casa en el Bar r io del Altoque vendier on sus her manos
mientr as guer r eaba, los di?as inu?tiles (los di?as que uno esper a olvidar , los di?
as que uno sabe queolvidar a?),si tuvo su hor a alta, a caballo,en la visible pampa
de Juni?n como en un escenar io par a el futur o, como si el anfiteatr o de montan?as
fuer a el futur o.Que? impor ta el tiempo sucesivo si en e?l hubo una plenitud, un e?
xtasis, una tar de.Sir vio? tr ece an?os en las guer r as de Ame?r ica. Al finla suer te
lo llevo? al Estado Or iental, a campos del Ri?o Negr o. En los atar decer es pensar i?a
que par a e?l habi?a flor ecido esa r osa:la encamada batalla de Juni?n, el instante
infinitoen que las lanzas se tocar on, la or den que movio? la batalla,la der r ota
inicial, y entr e los fr agor es(no menos br usca par a e?l que par a la tr opa)su voz
gr itando a los per uanos que ar r emetier an,la luz, el i?mpetu y la fatalidad de la
car ga,el fur ioso laber into de los eje?r citos,la batalla de lanzas en la que no
r etumbo? un solo tir o,el godo que atr aveso? con el hier r o,la victor ia, la
felicidad, la fatiga, un pr incipio de suen?o,??? A PAGE TO COMMEMORATE COLONEL
SUAREZ, VICTOR AT JUNIN What do they matter now, the depr ivations,exile, the
ignominies of gr owing old,the dictator 's shadow spr eading acr oss the land, the
housein the Bar r io del Alto, which his br other s sold while he fought, the pointless
days (days one hopes to for get,days one knows ar e for gettable),when he had at least
his bur ning hour on hor sebackon the plateau of Juni?n, a stage for the futur e,as if
that mountain stage itself wer e the futur e?What is time's monotony to him, who knew
that fulfillment, that ecstasy, that after noon?Thir teen year s he ser ved in the War s
of Independence. Then fate took him to Ur uguay, to the banks of the Ri?o Negr o. In
the dying after noons he would thinkof his moment which had flower ed like a r ose--
the cr imson battle of Juni?n, the endur ing moment in which the lances cr ossed, the
or der of battle, defeat at fir st, and in the upr oar (as astonishing to him as to the
ar my)his voice ur ging the Per uvians to the attack,the thr ill, the dr ive, the
decisiveness of the char ge, the seething labyr inth of cavalr ies,clash of the lances
(not a single shot fir ed),the Spaniar d he r an thr ough with his spear , the headiness
of victor y, the exhaustion, the dr owsiness descending,??? y la gente mur iendo
entr e los pantanos,y Boli?var pr onunciando palabr as sin duda histo?r icasy el sol ya
occidental y el r ecuper ado sabor del agua y del vino, y aquel muer to sin car a
por que la piso? y bor r o? la batalla . . .Su bisnieto escr ibe estos ver sos y una ta?
cita
vozdesde lo antiguo de la sangr e le llega:--Que? impor ta mi batalla de Juni?n si
es una glor iosa memor ia, una fecha que se apr ende par a un examen o un lugar en el
atlas. La batalla es eter na y puede pr escindir de la pompade visibles eje?r citos
con clar ines;Juni?n son dos civiles que en una esquina maldicen a un tir ano, o un
hombr e oscur o que se muer e en la ca?r cel.??????? and the men dying in the mar shes,
and Boli?var utter ing wor ds ear mar ked no doubt for histor y, and the sun in the west
by now, and water and winetasted as for the fir st time, and that dead manwhose face
the battle had tr ampled on and obliter ated.. . .His gr eat-gr andson is wr iting these
lines,and a silent voice comes to him out of the past, out of the blood:"What does
my battle at Juni?n matter if it is only a glor ious memor y, or a date lear ned by
r otefor an examination, or a place in the atlas?The battle is ever lasting and can
do withoutthe pomp of actual ar mies and of tr umpets. Juni?n is two civilians
cur sing a tyr anton a str eet comer ,or an unknown man somewher e, dying in pr ison."
[Alastair Reid] ??? MATEO, XXV, ?? El pr imer puente de Constitucio?n y a mis pies
Fr agor de tr enes que teji?an laber intos de hier r o. Humo y silbidos escalaban la
noche, Que de golpe fue el Juicio Univer sal. Desde el invisible hor izonte Y desde
el centr o de mi ser , una voz infinitaDijo estas cosas (estas cosas, no estas
palabr as,Que son mi pobr e tr aduccio?n tempor al de una sola palabr a): --Estr ellas,
pan, bibliotecas or ientales y occidentales,Naipes, tabler os de ajedr ez, galer i?as,
clar aboyas y so?tanos,Un cuer po humano par a andar por la tier r a,Un?as que cr ecen en
la noche, en la muer te,Sombr a que olvida, atar eados espejos que multiplican,
Declives de la mu?sica, la ma?s do?cil de las for mas del tiempo, Fr onter as del
Br asil y del Ur uguay, caballos y man?anas,Una pesa de br once y un ejemplar de la
Saga de Gr ettir , Algebr a y fuego, la car ga de Juni?n en tu sangr e,Di?as ma?s
populosos que Balzac, el olor de la madr eselva, Amor y vi?sper a de amor y r ecuer dos
intoler ables,El suen?o como un tesor o enter r ado, el dadivoso azar Y la memor ia, que
el hombr e no mir a sin ve?r tigo,Todo eso te fue dado, y tambie?nEl antiguo alimento
de los he?r oes:La falsi?a, la der r ota, la humillacio?n.En vano te hemos pr odigado
el oce?ano,En vano el sol, que vier on los mar avillados ojos de Whitman; Has gastado
los an?os y te han gastado,Y todavi?a no has escr ito el poema.??????? MATTHEW XXV:
?? The fir st br idge, Constitution Station. At my feetThe shunting tr ains tr ace ir on
labyr inths.Steam hisses up and up into the night,Which becomes at a str oke the
night of the Last Judgment.Fr om the unseen hor izonAnd fr om the ver y center of my
being,An infinite voice pr onounced these things-- Things, not wor ds. This is my
feeble tr anslation, Time-bound, of what was a single limitless Wor d:"Star s, br ead,
libr ar ies of East and West,Playing car ds, chessboar ds, galler ies, skylights,
cellar s,A human body to walk with on the ear th,Finger nails, gr owing at night-time
and in death,Shadows for for getting, mir r or s busily multiplying,Cascades in music,
gentlest of all time's shapes,Bor der s of Br azil, Ur uguay, hor ses and mor nings,A
br onze weight, a copy of the Gr ettir Saga,Algebr a and fir e, the char ge at Juni?n in
your blood,Days mor e cr owded than Balzac, scent of the honeysuckle, Love and the
imminence of love and intoler able r emember ing, Dr eams like bur ied tr easur e,
gener ous luck,And memor y itself, wher e a glance can make men dizzy--All this was
given to you and with itThe ancient nour ishment of her oes--Tr eacher y, defeat,
humiliation.In vain have oceans been squander ed on you, in vainThe sun, wonder fully
seen thr ough Whitman's eyes.You have used up the year s and they have used up you,
And still, and still, you have not wr itten the poem." [Alastair Reid] ??? EL PUN?AL
A Mar gar ita BungeEn un cajo?n hay un pun?al.Fue for jado en Toledo, a fines del
siglo pasado;Luis Melia?n Lafinur se lo dio a mi padr e, que lo tr ajo del Ur uguay;
Evar isto Car r iego lo tuvo alguna vez en la mano. Quienes lo ven tienen que jugar un
r ato con e?l; se advier te que hace mucho que lo buscaban; la mano se apr esur a a
apr etar la empun?adur a que la esper a; la hoja obediente y poder osa juega con
pr ecisio?n en la vaina. Otr a cosa quier e el pun?al. Es ma?s que una estr uctur a
hecha de metales; los hombr es lo pensar on y lo for mar on par a un fin muy pr eciso;
es, de un modo eter no, el pun?al que anoche mato? a un hombr e en Tacuar embo? y los
pun?ales que matar on a Ce?sar . Quier e matar , quier e der r amar br usca sangr e. En un
cajo?n del escr itor io, entr e bor r ador es y car tas, inter minablemente suen?a el pun?
al su sencillo suen?o de tigr e, y la mano se anima cuando lo r ige por que el metal
se anima, el metal que pr esiente en cada contacto al homicida par a quien lo cr ear on
los hombr es. A veces me da la?stima. Tanta dur eza, tanta fe, tan impasible o
inocente sober bia, y los an?os pasan, inu?tiles. ??? THE DAGGER To Mar gar ita BungeA
dagger r ests in a dr awer .It was for ged in Toledo at the end of the lastcentur y.
Luis Melia?n Lafinur gave it to my father , who br ought it fr om Ur uguay. Evar isto
Car r iego once held it in his hand.Whoever lays eyes on it has to pick up the dagger
and toy with it, as if he had always been on the lookout for it. The hand is quick
to gr ip the waiting hilt, and the power ful obeying blade slides in and out of the
sheath with a click.This is not what the dagger wants. It is mor e than a str uctur e
of metal; men conceived it and shaped it with a single end in mind. It is, in some
eter nal way, the dagger that last night knifed a man in Tacuar embo? and the dagger s
that r ained on Caesar . It wants to kill, it wants to shed sudden blood.In a dr awer
of my wr iting table, among dr aft pages and old letter s, the dagger dr eams over and
over its simple tiger 's dr eam. On wielding it the hand comes alive because the
metal comes alive, sensing itself, each time handled, in touch with the killer for
whom it was for ged. At times I am sor r y for it. Such power and single- mindedness,
so impassive or innocent its pr ide, and the year s slip by, unheeding. [Nor man
Thomas di Giovanni] ??? UNA BRUJULA A Esther Zembor ain de Tor r esTodas las cosas son
palabr as delIdioma en que Alguien o Algo, noche y di?a, Escr ibe esa infinita
algar abi?aQue es la histor ia del mundo. En su tr opelPasan Car tago y Roma, yo, tu?,
e?l, Mi vida que no entiendo, esta agoni?a De ser enigma, azar , cr iptogr afi?aY toda
la discor dia de Babel.Detr a?s del nombr e hay lo que no se nombr a; Hoy he sentido
gr avitar su sombr aEn esta aguja azul, lu?cida y leve, Que hacia el confi?n de un
mar tiende su empen?o, Con algo de r eloj visto en un suen?o Y algo de ave dor mida
que se mueve. ??? COMPASS To Esther Zembor ain de Tor r esAll things ar e wor ds of some
str ange tongue, in thr all To Someone, Something, who both day and night Pr oceeds in
endless gibber ish to wr iteThe histor y of the wor ld. In that dar k scr awlRome is set
down, and Car thage, I, you, all, And this my being which escapes me quite, My
anguished life that's cr yptic, r econdite, And gar bled as the tongues of Babel's
fall.Beyond the name ther e lies what has no name; Today I have felt its shadow stir
the aimOf this blue needle, light and keen, whose sweepHomes to the utmost of the
sea its love, Suggestive of a watch in dr eams, or ofSome bir d, per haps, who shifts
a bit in sleep. [Richar d Wilbur ] ??? UN POETA DEL SIGLO XIII Vuelve a mir ar los
ar duos bor r ador es De aquel pr imer soneto innominado, La pa?gina ar bitr ar ia en que
ha mezclado Ter cetos y cuar tetos pecador es.Lima con lenta pluma sus r igor esY se
detiene. Acaso le ha llegado Del por venir y de su hor r or sagr ado Un r umor de
r emotos r uisen?or es.?Habr a? sentido que no estaba solo Y que el ar cano, el incr ei?
ble Apolo Le habi?a r evelado un ar quetipo,Un a?vido cr istal que apr esar i?a Cuanto
la noche cier r a o abr e el di?a: De?dalo, laber into, enigma, Edipo???? A POET OF
THE THIRTEENTH CENTURY Think of him labor ing in the Tuscan halls On the fir st
sonnet (that wor d still unsaid), The undistinguished pages, filled with sad
Tr iplets and quatr ains, without heads or tails.Slowly he shapes it; yet the impulse
fails.He stops, per haps at a str ange slight music shed Fr om time coming and its
holy dr ead,A mur mur ing of far -off nightingales.Did he sense that other s wer e to
follow, That the ar cane, incr edible ApolloHad r evealed an ar chetypal thing,A
whir lpool mir r or that would dr aw and hold All that night could hide or day unfold:
Daedalus, labyr inth, r iddle, Oedipus K ing? ???[William Fer guson] UN SOLDADO DE
URBINA Sospecha?ndose indigno de otr a hazan?a Como aquella en el mar , este soldado,
A so?r didos oficios r esignado,Er r aba oscur o por su dur a Espan?a.Par a bor r ar o
mitigar la san?aDe lo r eal, buscaba lo son?adoY le dier on un ma?gico pasadoLos
ciclos de Rolando y de Br etan?a.Contemplar i?a, hundido el sol, el ancho Campo en
que dur a un r esplandor de cobr e; Se cr ei?a acabado, solo y pobr e,Sin saber de que?
mu?sica er a duen?o; Atr avesando el fondo de algu?n suen?o, Por e?l ya andaban don
Quijote y Sancho.??? A SOLDIER OF URBINA Feeling himself unfitted for the str ain
Of battles like the last he fought at sea, This soldier , doomed to sor did usur y,
Wander ed unknown thr oughout his own har sh Spain.To blot out or to mitigate the pain
Of all r eality, he hid in dr eam;A magic past was opened up to himThr ough Roland and
the tales of Ancient Br itain.At sunset he would contemplate the vast Plain with its
copper light linger ing on; He felt himself defeated, poor , alone,Ignor ant of what
music he was master ; Alr eady, in the still depths of some dr eam, Don Quixote and
Sancho wer e alive in him. [Alastair Reid] ??? LIMITES De estas calles que ahondan
el poniente, Una habr a? (no se? cua?l) que he r ecor r ido
Ya por u?ltima vez, indifer enteY sin adivinar lo, sometidoA Quie?n pr efija
omnipotentes nor mas Y una secr eta y r i?gida medidaA las sombr as, los suen?os y las
for mas Que destejen y tejen esta vida.Si par a todo hay te?r mino y hay tasa Y u?
ltima vez y nunca ma?s y olvido ?Quie?n nos dir a? de quie?n, en esta casa, Sin
saber lo, nos hemos despedido?Tr as el cr istal ya gr is la noche cesa Y del alto de
libr os que una tr uncaSombr a dilata por la vaga mesa, Alguno habr a? que no leer emos
nunca.Hay en el Sur ma?s de un por to?n gastado Con sus jar r ones de maniposter i?aY
tunas, que a mi paso esta? vedado Como si fuer a una litogr afi?a.Par a siempr e
cer r aste alguna puer taY hay un espejo que te aguar da en vano; La encr ucijada te
par ece abier taY la vigila, cuadr ifr onte, Jano.??? LIMITS Of all the str eets that
blur into the sunset, Ther e must be one (which, I am not sur e) That I by now have
walked for the last time Without guessing it, the pawn of that SomeoneWho fixes in
advance omnipotent laws, Sets up a secr et and unwaver ing scale For all the shadows,
dr eams, and for msWoven into the textur e of this life.If ther e is a limit to all
things and a measur eAnd a last time and nothing mor e and for getfulness, Who will
tell us to whom in this houseWe without knowing it have said far ewell?Thr ough the
dawning window night withdr aws And among the stacked books which thr ow Ir r egular
shadows on the dim table,Ther e must be one which I will never r ead.Ther e is in the
South mor e than one wor n gate, With its cement ur ns and planted cactus,Which is
alr eady for bidden to my entr y, Inaccessible, as in a lithogr aph.Ther e is a door you
have closed for ever And some mir r or is expecting you in vain; To you the cr ossr oads
seem wide open, Yet watching you, four -faced, is a Janus. ??? Hay, entr e todas tus
memor ias, una Que se ha per dido ir r epar ablemente; No te ver a?n bajar a aquella
fuente Ni el blanco sol ni la amar illa luna.No volver a? tu voz a lo que el per sa
Dijo en su lengua de aves y de r osas, Cuando al ocaso, ante la luz disper sa,
Quier as decir inolvidables cosas.?Y el incesante Ro?dano y el lago, Todo ese ayer
sobr e el cual hoy me inclino? Tan per dido estar a? como Car tagoQue con fuego y con
sal bor r o? el latino.Cr eo en el alba oi?r un atar eado Rumor de multitudes que se
alejan;Son lo que me ha quer ido y olvidado; Espacio y tiempo y Bor ges ya me dejan.
??? Ther e is among all your memor ies oneWhich has now been lost beyond r ecall.You
will not be seen going down to that fountain Neither by white sun nor by yellow
moon.You will never r ecaptur e what the Per sianSaid in his language woven with bir ds
and r oses,When, in the sunset, befor e the light disper ses, You wish to give wor ds
to unfor gettable things.And the steadily flowing Rhone and the lake, All that vast
yester day over which today I bend? They will be as lost as Car thage,Scour ged by the
Romans with fir e and salt.At dawn I seem to hear the tur bulentMur mur of cr owds
milling and fading away; They ar e all I have been loved by, for gotten by; Space,
time, and Bor ges now ar e leaving me. [Alastair Reid] ??? UN SAJON (a.d. ???) Ya se
habi?a hundido la encor vada luna; Lento en el alba el hombr e r ubio y r udo Piso? con
r eceloso pie desnudoLa ar ena minuciosa de la duna.Ma?s alla? de la pa?lida bahi?a,
Blancas tier r as mir o? y negr os alcor es, En esa hor a elemental del di?aEn que Dios
no ha cr eado los color es.Er a tenaz. Obr ar on su for tuna Remos, r edes, ar ado, espada,
escudo; La dur a mano que guer r eaba pudo Gr abar con hier r o una por fiada r una.De una
tier r a de cie?nagas veni?aA esta que r oen los pesados mar es; Sobr e e?l se abovedaba
como el di?a El Destino, y tambie?n sobr e sus lar es,Woden o Thunor , que con tor pe
mano Engalano? de tr apos y de clavosY en cuyo altar sacr ifico? inhumano Caballos,
per r os, pa?jar os y esclavos.Par a cantar memor ias o alabanzas Amonedaba labor iosos
nombr es; La guer r a er a el encuentr o de los hombr es Y tambie?n el encuentr o de las
lanzas. ??? A SAXON (a.d. ???) By now it had gone down, the sickle moon; Slowly in
the dawn the man, blond and blunt, Tr od with a tentative bar e footThe fine and
shifting sand gr ains of the dune.Far off, beyond the pallor of the bay,His eye took
in blank lowlands and dar k hills In that fir st waking moment of the day When God
has not yet br ought to light the color s. He was dogged. His sur vival counted onHis
oar s and nets, his plough, his swor d, his shield; The hand that was har d in battle
still was ableTo car ve with ir on point a stubbor n r une.He came fr om a land of tidal
swamp and mar sh To one er oded by r elentless seas;Destiny tower ed above him like the
ar chOf the day, and over his household deities,Woden or Thunor , whom with clumsy
hand He gar landed with r ags and ir on nails,And on whose altar offer ed up,
indiffer ent, His animals--hor ses, dogs, fowls--and slaves.To give a voice to
memor ies or hymnsHe coined labor ious names and metaphor s; War was a coming face to
face of men,A cr ossing of swor ds, a colloquy of spear s.??? Su mundo er a de magias
en los mar es, De r eyes y de lobos y del HadoQue no per dona y del hor r or sagr ado Que
hay en el cor azo?n de los pinar es.Tr ai?a las palabr as esencialesDe una lengua que
el tiempo exaltar i?a A mu?sica de Shakespear e: noche, di?a, Agua, fuego, color es y
metales,Hambr e, sed, amar gur a, suen?o, guer r a, Muer te y los otr os ha?bitos humanos;
En ar duos montes y en abier tos llanos, Sus hijos engendr ar on a Inglater r a.??? His
wor ld was one of wonder s on the seas, Of kings and wolves and an imper vious Fate
Which gr ants no par don, and of fear ful spells Lur king in the black hear t of the
pine wood.He br ought with him the elemental wor ds Of a language that in time would
flower In Shakespear e's har monies: night, day, Water , fir e, wor ds for metals and
color s,Hunger , thir st, bitter ness, sleep, fighting, Death, and other gr ave concer ns
of men; On br oad meadows and in tangled woodland The sons he bor e br ought England
into being. [Alastair Reid] ??? EL GOLEM Si (como el gr iego afir ma en el Cr atilo)
El nombr e es ar quetipo de la cosa,En las letr as de r osa esta? la r osaY todo el Nilo
en la palabr a Nilo.Y, hecho de consonantes y vocales, Habr a? un ter r ible Nombr e,
que la esencia Cifr e de Dios y que la Omnipotencia Guar de en letr as y si?labas
cabales.Ada?n y las estr ellas lo supier onEn el Jar di?n. La her r umbr e del pecado
(Dicen los cabalistas) lo ha bor r adoY las gener aciones lo per dier on.Los ar tificios
y el candor del hombr eNo tienen fin. Sabemos que hubo un di?aEn que el pueblo de
Dios buscaba el Nombr e En las vigilias de la juder i?a.No a la maner a de otr as que
una vaga Sombr a insinu?an en la vaga histor ia, Au?n esta? ver de y viva la memor iaDe
Juda? Leo?n, que er a r abino en Pr aga.Sediento de saber lo que Dios sabe, Juda? Leo?
n se dio a per mutacionesDe letr as y a complejas var iaciones Y al fin pr onuncio? el
Nombr e que es la Clave,??? THE GOLEM If ever y name is (as the Gr eek maintains In
the Cr atylus) the ar chetype of its thing, Among the letter s of r ing, r esides the
r ing, And in the wor d Nile all the Nile r emains.Then, made up of vowels and
consonants, Encoding God's essence, should exist some Name Whose exact syllables
and letter s fr ameWithin them, ter r ibly, Omnipotence.Adam and all the star s had
known it, placed Ther e in the Gar den. The cor r osive r ust Of sin (cabalists say) has
long effacedThe Name that gener ations since have lost.Human innocency and human
guileAr e boundless: it is known that a day came When the Chosen People pur sued the
Name Over the wakeful ghetto's midnight oil.Unlike the way of those who, as in fog,
Beam a dim shadow in dim histor y,Gr een and alive r emains the memor yOf Judah, the
Hohe Rabbi Lo?w of Pr ague.Year ning to know that which the Deity K nows, the Rabbi
tur ned to per mutations Of letter s in complicated var iations, And finally pr onounced
the Name which is the K ey, ??? La Puer ta, el Eco, el Hue?sped y el Palacio, Sobr e
un mun?eco que con tor pes manos Labr o?, par a ensen?ar le los ar canosDe las Letr as,
del Tiempo y del Espacio.El simulacr o alzo? los son?olientos Pa?r pados y vio for mas
y color esQue no entendio?, per didos en r umor es, Y ensayo? temer osos movimientos.
(El cabalista que oficio? de numen A la vasta cr iatur a apodo? Golem; Estas ver dades
las r efier e Scholem En un docto lugar de su volumen.)El r abi? le explicaba el
univer so(Esto es mi pie; esto el tuyo; esto la soga)Y logr o?, al cabo de an?os, que
el per ver so Bar r ier a bien o mal la sinagoga.Tal vez hubo un er r or en la gr afi?aO en
la ar ticulacio?n del Sacr o Nombr e; A pesar de tan alta hechicer i?a, No apr endio? a
hablar el apr endiz de hombr e. Sus ojos, menos de hombr e que de per r o Y har to menos
de per r o que de cosa,Segui?an al r abi? por la dudosa Penumbr a de las piezas del
encier r o. Gr adualmente se vio (como nosotr os) Apr isionado en esta r ed sonor aDe
Antes, Despue?s, Ayer , Mientr as, Ahor a, Der echa, Izquier da, Yo, Tu?, Aquellos,
Otr os.??? The Entr y Gate, the Echo, Host, and Mansion, Over a dummy at which, with
sluggish hand, He labor ed har d that it might under stand Secr ets of Time, Space,
Being, and Extension.The simulacr um r aised its heavy, lower ed Eyelids and per ceived
color s and for ms; It under stood not; lost in loud alar ms,It star ted to take gr oping
paces for war d. And like our selves, it gr adually becameLocked in the sonor ous meshes
of the netOf After , Befor e, Tomor r ow, Meanwhile, Yet, Right, Left, You, Me, and
Differ ent and Same. (The cabalist fr om whom the cr eatur e took Its inspir ation
called the weir d thing Golem-- But all these matter s ar e discussed by Scholem In a
most lear ned passage in his book.)The r abbi r evealed to it the univer se (This is my
foot; that's your s; this is a log) And after year s of tr aining, the per ver se Pupil
managed to sweep the synagogue.Per haps ther e was a faulty text, or br eachIn the
ar ticulation of the Name;The
magic was the highest--all the same, The appr entice per son never master ed speech.
Less a man's than a dog's, less a dog's, well, Even than a thing's, the cr eatur e's
eyes Would always tur n to follow the r abbi'sSteps thr ough the dubious shadows of
his cell.??? Algo anor mal y tosco hubo en el Golem, Ya que a su paso el gato del
r abinoSe escondi?a. (Ese gato no esta? en Scholem Per o, a tr ave?s del tiempo, lo
adivino.) Elevando a su Dios manos filiales, Las devociones de su Dios copiaba O,
estu?pido y sonr iente, se ahuecaba En co?ncavas zalemas or ientales.El r abi? lo
mir aba con ter nur aY con algu?n hor r or . ?Co?mo (se dijo) Pude engendr ar este penoso
hijoY la inaccio?n deje?, que es la cor dur a??Por que? di en agr egar a la infinita
Ser ie un si?mbolo ma?s? ?Por que? a la vana Madeja que en lo eter no se devana,Di
otr a causa, otr o efecto y otr a cuita?En la hor a de angustia y de luz vaga, En su
Golem los ojos deteni?a. ?Quie?n nos dir a? las cosas que senti?a Dios, al mir ar a
su r abino en Pr aga????? ??? Something eer ie, gr oss, about the Golem, For , at his
ver y coming, the r abbi's cat Would vanish. (The cat cannot be found in Scholem;
Acr oss the year s, I divine it, for all that.)Towar d God it would extend those
filial palms, Aping the devotions of its God,Or bend itself, the stupid, gr inning
clod,In hollow, Or ientalized salaams.The r abbi gazed on it with tender eyes And
ter r or . How (he asked) could it be doneThat I engender this distr essing son?
Inaction is wisdom. I left off being wise.To an infinite ser ies why was it for me
To add another integer ? To the vainHank that is spun out in Eter nity Another cause
or effect, another pain?At the anguished hour when the light gets vague Upon his
Golem his eyes would come to r est. Who can tell us the feelings in His br eastAs God
gazed on His r abbi ther e in Pr ague?[John Hollander ] ??? POEMA DE LOS DONES A Mar i?a
Esther Va?zquezNadie r ebaje a la?gr ima o r epr oche Esta declar acio?n de la maestr i?a
De Dios, que con magni?fica ir oni?a Me dio a la vez los libr os y la noche.De esta
ciudad de libr os hizo duen?os A unos ojos sin luz, que so?lo pueden Leer en las
bibliotecas de los suen?os Los insensatos pa?r r afos que cedenLas albas a su afa?n.
En vano el di?a Les pr odiga sus libr os infinitos, Ar duos como los ar duos
manuscr itos Que per ecier on en Alejandr i?a.De hambr e y de sed (nar r a una histor ia
gr iega) Muer e un r ey entr e fuentes y jar dines;Yo fatigo sin r umbo los confinesDe
esta alta y honda biblioteca ciega.Enciclopedias, atlas, el Or ienteY el Occidente,
siglos, dinasti?as, Si?mbolos, cosmos y cosmogoni?as Br indan los mur os, per o inu?
tilmente.Lento en mi sombr a, la penumbr a hueca Explor o con el ba?culo indeciso,Yo,
que me figur aba el Par ai?soBajo la especie de una biblioteca. ??? POEM OF THE GIFTS
To Mar i?a Esther Va?zquezNo one should r ead self-pity or r epr oachInto this
statement of the majestyOf God, who with such splendid ir ony Gr anted me books and
blindness at one touch.Car e of this city of books he handed over To sightless eyes,
which now can do no mor e Than r ead in libr ar ies of dr eam the poor And senseless
par agr aphs that dawns deliver To wishful scr utiny. In vain the daySquander s on these
same eyes its infinite tomes, As distant as the inaccessible volumesWhich per ished
once in Alexandr ia.Fr om hunger and fr om thir st (in the Gr eek stor y), A king lies
dying among gar dens and fountains. Aimlessly, endlessly, I tr ace the confines,High
and pr ofound, of this blind libr ar y.Cultur es of East and West, the entir e atlas,
Encyclopedias, centur ies, dynasties,Symbols, the cosmos, and cosmogoniesAr e offer ed
fr om the walls, all to no pur pose.In shadow, with a tentative stick, I tr yThe
hollow twilight, slow and impr ecise-- I, who had always thought of Par adiseIn for m
and image as a libr ar y.??? Algo, que cier tamente no se nombr a Con la palabr a azar ,
r ige estas cosas; Otr o ya r ecibio? en otr as bor r osas Tar des los muchos libr os y la
sombr a.Al er r ar por las lentas galer i?asSuelo sentir con vago hor r or sagr adoQue soy
el otr o, el muer to, que habr a? dado Los mismos pasos en los mismos di?as.?Cua?l de
los dos escr ibe este poemaDe un yo plur al y de una sola sombr a? ?Que? impor ta la
palabr a que me nombr a Si es indiviso y uno el anatema?Gr oussac o Bor ges, mir o este
quer ido Mundo que se defor ma y que se apaga En una pa?lida ceniza vagaQue se par ece
al suen?o y al olvido. ??? Something, which cer tainly is not definedBy the wor d
fate, ar r anges all these things; Another man was given, on other eveningsNow gone,
these many books. He too was blind.Wander ing thr ough the gr adual galler ies,I often
feel with vague and holy dr eadI am that other dead one, who attempted The same
uncer tain steps on similar days.Which of the two is setting down this poem--A
single sightless self, a plur al I?What can it matter , then, the name that names me,
Given our cur se is common and the same?Gr oussac or Bor ges, now I look upon This
dear wor ld losing shape, fading away Into a pale uncer tain ashy-gr ayThat feels like
sleep, or else oblivion. [Alastair Reid] ??? AJEDREZ IEn su gr ave r inco?n, los
jugador es Rigen las lentas piezas. El tabler o Los demor a hasta el alba en su sever o
Ambito en que se odian dos color es.Adentr o ir r adian ma?gicos r igor es Las for mas:
tor r e home?r ica, liger o Caballo, ar mada r eina, r ey postr er o, Oblicuo alfil y peones
agr esor es.Cuando los jugador es se hayan ido, Cuando el tiempo los haya consumido,
Cier tamente no habr a? cesado el r ito.En el Or iente se encendio? esta guer r a Cuyo
anfiteatr o es hoy toda la tier r a. Como el otr o, este juego es infinito.IITenue r ey,
sesgo alfil, encar nizada Reina, tor r e dir ecta y peo?n ladino Sobr e lo negr o y
blanco del camino Buscan y libr an su batalla ar mada.No saben que la mano sen?alada
Del jugador gobier na su destino, No saben que un r igor adamantino Sujeta su
albedr i?o y su jomada. ??? CHESS ISet in their studious comer s, the player sMove the
gr adual pieces. Until dawnThe chessboar d keeps them in its str ict confinement With
its two color s set at dagger s dr awn.Within the game itself the for ms give off Their
magic r ules: Homer ic castle, knight Swift to attack, queen war like, king decisive,
Slanted bishop, and attacking pawns.Eventually, when the player s have withdr awn,
When time itself has finally consumed them, The r itual cer tainly will not be done.
It was in the East this war took fir e.Today the whole ear th is its theater .Like the
game of love, this game goes on for ever .IIFaint-hear ted king, sly bishop, r uthless
queen, Str aightfor war d castle, and deceitful pawn-- Over the checker ed black and
white ter r ain They seek out and begin their ar med campaign.They do not know it is
the player 's hand That dominates and guides their destiny. They do not know an
adamantine fate Contr ols their will and lays the battle plan.??? Tambie?n el
jugador es pr isioner o(La sentencia es de Omar ) de otr o tabler o De negr as noches y
de blancos di?as.Dios mueve al jugador , y e?ste, la pieza. ?Que? dios detr a?s de
Dios la tr ama empieza De polvo y tiempo y suen?o y agoni?as? ??? The player too is
captive of capr ice(The wor ds ar e Omar 's) on another gr ound Wher e black nights
alter nate with whiter days. God moves the player , he in tur n the piece. But what
god beyond God begins the r ound Of dust and time and sleep and agonies? [Alastair
Reid] ??? ELVIRA DE ALVEAR Todas las cosas tuvo y lentamente Todas la abandonar on.
La hemos visto Ar mada de belleza. La man?anaY el ar duo mediodi?a le mostr ar on,
Desde su cumbr e, los her mosos r einos De la tier r a. La tar de fue bor r a?ndolos. El
favor de los astr os (la infinita Y ubicua r ed de causas) le habi?a dado La for tuna,
que anula las distancias Como el tapiz del a?r abe, y confunde Deseo y posesio?n, y
el don del ver so, Que tr ansfor ma las penas ver dader asEn una mu?sica, un r umor y un
si?mbolo, Y el fer vor , y en la sangr e la batalla De Ituzaingo? y el peso de
laur eles, Y el goce de per der se en el er r ante Ri?o del tiempo (r i?o y laber into)Y
en los lentos color es de las tar des. Todas las cosas la dejar on, menosUna. La
gener osa cor tesi?aLa acompan?o? hasta el fin de su jomada, Ma?s alla? del delir io y
del eclipse,De un modo casi ange?lico. De Elvir a Lo pr imer o que vi, hace tantos an?
os, Fue la sonr isa y es tambie?n lo u?ltimo. ??? ELVIRA DE ALVEAR She once had
ever ything but one by oneEach thing abandoned her . We saw her ar med With beauty.
The mor ning and the har d light Of noon fr om their pinnacle r evealed to her The
glor ious kingdoms of the wor ld. Evening Wiped them away. The luck of the star s(The
endless, ever pr esent web of causes)Had gr anted her wealth, which shr inks distances
Like a magic car pet and confusesDesir e and possession; and the gift of ver se, Which
wor ks to change r eal suffer ing into Music and to sound and to symbol;And ener gy;
and in her blood the battleOf Ituzaingo? and the weight of laur els; And the
pleasur e of losing oneself in time's Meander ing r iver (r iver and maze)And the
evening's slowly shifting color s. Each thing deser ted her , except for one.
War mhear ted gr aciousness was at her side Until her final days, beyond her madness
And decline, in an almost angelic way. Of Elvir a what I saw fir st, year s and year s
Past, was her smile and it is now the last. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??? SUSANA
SOCA Con lento amor mir aba los disper sos Color es de la tar de. Le placi?a Per der se
en la compleja melodi?aO en la cur iosa vida de los ver sos. No el r ojo elemental
sino los gr ises Hilar on su destino delicado,Hecho a discr iminar y ejer citado En la
vacilacio?n y en los matices. Sin atr ever se a hollar este per plejo Laber into,
mir aba desde afuer aLas for mas, el tumulto y la car r er a, Como aquella otr a dama del
espejo. Dioses que mor an ma?s alla? del r uego La abandonar on a ese tigr e, el Fuego.
??? SUSANA SOCA With gr adual love she watched the evening Color s
disper se. How much she enjoyed Dissolving in the intr icate tuneOr in the cur ious
life of ver ses! No pr imal r ed, but gr ey upon gr ay Embr oider ed her fastidious fate,
One inur ed to choosing and pr acticed In vacillation, me?lange, nuance.Not dar ing to
enter this doubtful Labyr inth, she obser ved (fr om outside) The for ms, the factions,
and the fr ay, Like that other lady of the mir r or . The gods who live past all
implor ing Abandoned her to that tiger , Fir e. [Richar d Howar d and Ce?sar Renner t]
??? LA LLUVIA Br uscamente la tar de se ha aclar ado Por que ya cae la lluvia
minuciosa. Cae o cayo?. La lluvia es una cosa Que sin duda sucede en el pasado.
Quien la oye caer ha r ecobr adoEl tiempo en que la suer te ventur osa Le r evelo? una
flor llamada r osaY el cur ioso color del color ado.Esta lluvia que ciega los
cr istales Alegr ar a? en per didos ar r abalesLas negr as uvas de una par r a en cier to
Patio que ya no existe. La mojada Tar de me tr ae la voz, la voz deseada, De mi padr e
que vuelve y que no ha muer to.??? RAIN Quite suddenly the evening clear s at last
As now outside the soft small r ain is falling. Falling or fallen. Rain itself is
something Undoubtedly which happens in the past.Whoever hear s it falling has
r emember edA time in which a cur ious twist of fateBr ought back to him a flower whose
name was "r ose" And the per plexing r edness of its r ed.This r ain which spr eads its
blind acr oss the pane Must also br ighten in for gotten subur bsThe black gr apes on a
vine acr oss a shr oudedPatio now no mor e. The evening's r ainBr ings me the voice, the
dear voice of my father , Who comes back now, who never has been dead. [Alastair
Reid] ??? EL OTRO TIGREAnd the cr aft that cr eateth a semblance mor r is: Sigur d the
Volsung (????)Pienso en un tigr e. La penumbr a exalta La vasta Biblioteca labor iosaY
par ece alejar los anaqueles; Fuer te, inocente, ensangr entado y nuevo, El ir a? por
su selva y su man?ana Y mar car a? su r astr o en la limosaMar gen de un r i?o cuyo
nombr e ignor a (En su mundo no hay nombr es ni pasado Ni por venir , so?lo un instante
cier to)Y salvar a? las ba?r bar as distanciasY husmear a? en el tr enzado laber intoDe
los olor es el olor del albaY el olor deleitable del venado;Entr e las r ayas del
bambu? descifr oSus r ayas y pr esiento la osatur aBajo la piel esple?ndida que vibr a.
En vano se inter ponen los convexos Mar es y los desier tos del planeta;Desde esta
casa de un r emoto puer toDe Ame?r ica del Sur , te sigo y suen?o,Oh tigr e de las ma?
r genes del Ganges.Cunde la tar de en mi alma y r eflexiono Que el tigr e vocativo de
mi ver soEs un tigr e de si?mbolos y sombr as, Una ser ie de tr opos liter ar iosY de
memor ias de la enciclopedia Y no el tigr e fatal, la aciaga joya Que, bajo el sol o
la diver sa luna,??? THE OTHER TIGER And the cr aft that cr eateth a semblance
mor r is: Sigur d the Volsung (????)A tiger comes to mind. The twilight her eExalts the
vast and busy Libr ar yAnd seems to set the bookshelves back in gloom; Innocent,
r uthless, bloodstained, sleek,It wander s thr ough its for est and its dayPr inting a
tr ack along the muddy banksOf sluggish str eams whose names it does not know (In its
wor ld ther e ar e no names or pastOr time to come, only the vivid now)And makes its
way acr oss wild distancesSniffing the br aided labyr inth of smellsAnd in the wind
picking the smell of dawnAnd tantalizing scent of gr azing deer ;Among the bamboo's
slanting str ipes I glimpse The tiger 's str ipes and sense the bony fr ameUnder the
splendid, quiver ing cover of skin. Cur ving oceans and the planet's wastes keep us
Apar t in vain; fr om her e in a house far offIn South Amer ica I dr eam of you,Tr ack
you, O tiger of the Ganges' banks.It str ikes me now as evening fills my soul That
the tiger addr essed in my poemIs a shadowy beast, a tiger of symbolsAnd scr aps
picked up at r andom out of books, A str ing of labor ed tr opes that have no life, And
not the fated tiger , the deadly jewelThat under sun or star s or changing moon ???
Va cumpliendo en Sumatr a o en Bengala Su r utina de amor , de ocio y de muer te. Al
tigr e de los si?mbolos he opuestoEl ver dader o, el de caliente sangr e,El que diezma
la tr ibu de los bu?falosY hoy, ? de agosto del ??,Alar ga en la pr ader a una pausada
Sombr a, per o ya el hecho de nombr ar lo Y de conjetur ar su cir cunstanciaLo hace
ficcio?n del ar te y no cr iatur a Viviente de las que andan por la tier r a.Un ter cer
tigr e buscar emos. Este Ser a? como los otr os una for maDe mi suen?o, un sistema de
palabr as Humanas y no el tigr e ver tebr ado Que, ma?s alla? de las mitologi?as,Pisa
la tier r a. Bien lo se?, per o algoMe impone esta aventur a indefinida, Insensata y
antigua, y per sever oEn buscar por el tiempo de la tar deEl otr o tigr e, el que no
esta? en el ver so.??? Goes on in Bengal or Sumatr a fulfillingIts r ounds of love
and indolence and death. To the tiger of symbols I hold opposed As it cuts down a
her d of buffaloes,And that today, this August thir d, nineteen Fifty-nine, thr ows
its shadow on the gr ass; But by the act of giving it a name,By tr ying to fix the
limits of its wor ld,It becomes a fiction, not a living beast, Not a tiger out
r oaming the wilds of ear th.We'll hunt for a thir d tiger now, but likeThe other s
this one too will be a for mOf what I dr eam, a str uctur e of wor ds, and not The flesh
and bone tiger that beyond all myths Paces the ear th. I know these things quite
well, Yet nonetheless some for ce keeps dr iving me In this vague, unr easonable, and
ancient quest, And I go on pur suing thr ough the hour s Another tiger , the beast not
found in ver se. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] The one that's r eal, the one whose
blood r uns hot ??? ALUSION A UNA SOMBRA DE MIL OCHOCIENTOS NOVENTA Y TANTOS Nada.
So?lo el cuchillo de Mur an?a.So?lo en la tar de gr is la histor ia tr unca. No se? por
que? en las tar des me acompan?a Este asesino que no he visto nunca. Paler mo er a ma?
s bajo. El amar illo Par edo?n de la ca?r cel dominabaAr r abal y bar r ial. Por esa br ava
Regio?n anduvo el so?r dido cuchillo.El cuchillo. La car a se ha bor r adoY de aquel
mer cenar io cuyo auster o Oficio er a el cor aje, no ha quedadoMa?s que una sombr a y un
fulgor de acer o. Que el tiempo, que los ma?r moles empan?a, Salve este fir me nombr e:
Juan Mur an?a. ??? ALLUSION TO A SHADOW OF THE NINETIES Nothing. Only Mur an?a's
knife. Only half a tale by gr ay light.Who knows why, now it is evening, This killer
I have never seen Follows me? Paler mo was thenA slum beneath the pr ison wall, And
in those bar r ens r oamed a vile K nife. His knife. The face has faded Of that
mer cenar y whose gr im Pr ofession was cour age; nothing Remains but a shadow, a flash
Of steel. Let time, bur ying mar ble, Save one fier ce name: Juan Mur an?a. [Richar d
Howar d and Ce?sar Renner t] ??? ALUSION A LA MUERTE DEL CORONEL FRANCISCO BORGES
(????-??) Lo dejo en el caballo, en esa hor a Cr epuscular en que busco? la muer te;
Que de todas las hor as de su suer teEsta per dur e, amar ga y vencedor a. Avanza por el
campo la blancur aDel caballo y del poncho. La paciente Muer te acecha en los r ifles.
Tr istemente Fr ancisco Bor ges va por la llanur a. Esto que lo cer caba, la metr alla,
Esto que ve, la pampa desmedida, Es lo que vio y oyo? toda la vida. Esta? en lo
cotidiano, en la batalla. Alto lo dejo en su e?pico univer so Y casi no tocado por
el ver so. ??? ALLUSION TO THE DEATH OF COLONEL FRANCISCO BORGES (????-????)I leave
him on his hor se on that eveningIn which he r ode acr oss the plain to meetHis death,
and of all the hour s of his fateMay this one, though bitter , go on living. White
hor se, white poncho pick a studied way Over the flat ter r ain. Ahead, death lur ks
Patiently in the bar r els of the guns.Colonel Bor ges sadly cr osses the plain.What
closed on him, the Remingtons' cr ackle, What his eye took in, endless gr azing land,
Ar e what he saw and hear d his whole life long. Her e was his home--in the thick of
battle.In his epic wor ld, r iding on his hor se,I leave him almost untouched by my
ver se.[Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??? LOS BORGES Nada o muy poco se? de mis
mayor es Por tugueses, los Bor ges: vaga genteQue pr osigue en mi car ne, oscur amente,
Sus ha?bitos, r igor es y temor es.Tenues como si nunca hubier an sido Y ajenos a los
tr a?mites del ar te, Indescifr ablemente for man par teDel tiempo, de la tier r a y del
olvido. Mejor asi?. Cumplida la faena,Son Por tugal, son la famosa gente Que for zo?
las mur allas del Or ienteY se dio al mar y al otr o mar de ar ena. Son el r ey que en
el mi?stico desier to Se per dio? y el que jur a que no ha muer to.??? THE BORGES I
know little or nothing of the Bor ges,My Por tuguese for ebear s. They wer e a ghostly
r ace, Who still ply in my body their myster ious Disciplines, habits, and anxieties.
Shadowy, as if they had never been,And str anger s to the pr ocesses of ar t,
Indecipher ably they for m a par tOf time, of ear th, and of oblivion.Better so. When
ever ything is said,They ar e Por tugal, they ar e that famous people Who for ced the
Gr eat Wall of the East, and fellTo the sea, and to that other sea of sand.They ar e
that king lost on the mystic str andAnd those at home who swear he is not dead.
[Alastair Reid] ??? AL INICIAR EL ESTUDIO DE LA GRAMATICA ANGLOSAJONA Al cabo de
cincuenta gener aciones(Tales abismos nos depar a a todos el tiempo)Vuelvo en la
mar gen ulter ior de un gr an r i?oQue no alcanzar on los dr agones del viking,A las a?
sper as y labor iosas palabr asQue, con una boca hecha polvo,Use? en los di?as de
Nor tumbr ia y de Mer cia,Antes de ser Haslam o Bor ges.El sa?bado leimos que Julio el
Ce?sar Fue el pr imer o que vino de Romebur h par a develar a Br etan?a; Antes que
vuelvan los r acimos habr e? escuchadoLa voz del r uisen?or del enigmaY la elegi?a de
los doce guer r er osQue r odean el tu?mulo de su r ey.Si?mbolos de otr os si?mbolos,
var iacionesDel futur o ingle?s o alema?n me par ecen estas palabr as Que alguna vez
fuer on ima?genesY que un hombr e uso? par a celebr ar el mar o una espada;
Man?ana volver a?n a vivir ,Man?ana fyr no ser a? fir e sino esa suer teDe dios
domesticado y cambianteQue a nadie le esta? dado mir ar sin un antiguo asombr o.
Alabado sea el infinitoLaber into de los efectos y de las causas Que antes de
mostr ar me el espejoEn que no ver e? a nadie o ver e? a otr o Me concede esta pur a
contemplacio?n De un lenguaje del alba.??? EMBARK ING ON THE STUDY OF ANGLO-SAXON
GRAMMAR After some fifty gener ations(Such gulfs ar e opened to us all by time)I come
back on the far shor e of a vast r iver Never r eached by the Nor semen's long ships To
the har sh and wor k-wr ought wor ds Which, with a tongue now dust,I used in the days
of Nor thumbr ia and Mer cia Befor e becoming Haslam or Bor ges.Last Satur day we r ead
how Julius Caesar Was the fir st who came fr om Romebur h to seek out Br itain; Befor e
the gr apes gr ow back I shall have listened to The nightingale of the r iddleAnd the
elegy intoned by the twelve war r ior s Round the bur ial mound of their king.To me
these wor ds seemSymbols of other symbols, var iantsOn the English or the Ger man
(their descendants), Yet at some point in time they wer e fr esh images And a man
used them to invoke the sea or a swor d. Tomor r ow they will come alive again;
Tomor r ow fyr will not become fir e but r ather Some vestige of a changeable tamed god
Whom no one can confr ont without feeling an ancient fear .All pr aise to the
inexhaustibleLabyr inth of cause and effectWhich, befor e unveiling to me the mir r or
Wher e I shall see no one or shall see some other self, Has gr anted me this per fect
contemplationOf a language at its dawn.[Alastair Reid] ??? LUCAS, XXIII Gentil o
hebr eo o simplemente un hombr e Cuya car a en el tiempo se ha per dido;Ya no
r escatar emos del olvidoLas silenciosas letr as de su nombr e.Supo de la clemencia lo
que puedeSaber un bandoler o que JudeaClava a una cr uz. Del tiempo que antecede Nada
alcanzamos hoy. En su tar eaUltima de mor ir cr ucificado,Oyo?, entr e los escar nios de
la gente, Que el que estaba mur ie?ndose a su lado Er a Dios y le dijo ciegamente:
Acue?r date de mi? cuando vinier esA tu r eino, y la voz inconcebibleQue un di?a
juzgar a? a todos los ser es Le pr ometio? desde la Cr uz ter r ibleEl Par ai?so. Nada ma?
s dijer onHasta que vino el fin, per o la histor iaNo dejar a? que muer a la memor iaDe
aquella tar de en que los dos mur ier on.Oh amigos, la inocencia de este amigo De
Jesucr isto, ese candor que hizo Que pidier a y ganar a el Par ai?soDesde las
ignominias del castigo,Er a el que tantas veces al pecado Lo ar r ojo? y al azar
ensangr entado. ??? LUK E XXIII Gentile or Jew or simply a man Whose face has been
lost in time, We shall not save the silent Letter s of his name fr om oblivion.What
could he know of for giveness, A thief whom Judea nailed to a cr oss? For us those
days ar e lost.Dur ing his last under taking,Death by cr ucifixion,He lear ned fr om the
taunts of the cr owd That the man who was dying beside him Was God. And blindly he
said:Remember me when thou comestInto thy kingdom, and fr om the ter r ible cr oss The
unimaginable voiceWhich one day will judge us allPr omised him Par adise. Nothing
mor e was said Between them befor e the end came,But histor y will not let the memor y
Of their last after noon die.O fr iends, the innocence of this fr iendOf Jesus! That
simplicity which made him, Fr om the disgr ace of punishment, ask for And be gr anted
Par adiseWas what dr ove him timeAnd again to sin and to bloody cr ime. [Mar k Str and]
??? ARTE POETICA Mir ar el r i?o hecho de tiempo y agua Y r ecor dar que el tiempo es
otr o r i?o, Saber que nos per demos como el r i?o Y que los r ostr os pasan como el
agua.Sentir que la vigilia es otr o suen?o Que suen?a no son?ar y que la muer te Que
teme nuestr a car ne es esa muer te De cada noche, que se llama suen?o. Ver en el di?a
o en el an?o un si?mbolo De los di?as del hombr e y de sus an?os, Conver tir el
ultr aje de los an?osEn una mu?sica, un r umor y un si?mbolo, Ver en la muer te el
suen?o, en el ocaso Un tr iste or o, tal es la poesi?aQue es inmor tal y pobr e. La
poesi?a Vuelve como la aur or a y el ocaso.A veces en las tar des una car aNos mir a
desde el fondo de un espejo; El ar te debe ser como ese espejoQue nos r evela nuestr a
pr opia car a.Cuentan que Ulises, har to de pr odigios, Llor o? de amor al divisar su
ItacaVer de y humilde. El ar te es esa Itaca De ver de eter nidad, no de pr odigios. ???
ARS POETICA To look at the r iver made of time and water And r emember that time is
another r iver , To know that we ar e lost like the r iver And that faces dissolve like
water .To be awar e that waking dr eams it is not asleep While it is another dr eam,
and that the death That our flesh goes in fear of is that death Which comes ever y
night and is called sleep.To see in the day or in the year a symbol Of the days of
man and of his year s,To tr ansmute the outr age of the year s Into a music, a mur mur
of voices, and a symbol, To see in death sleep, and in the sunset A sad gold such
is poetr y,Which is immor tal and poor . Poetr y Retur ns like the dawn and the sunset.
At times in the evenings a faceLooks at us out of the depths of a mir r or ; Ar t
should be like that mir r or Which r eveals to us our own face.They say that Ulysses,
sated with mar vels, Wept tear s of love at the sight of his Ithaca, Gr een and
humble. Ar t is that IthacaOf gr een eter nity, not of mar vels. ??? Tambie?n es como
el r i?o inter minableQue pasa y queda y es cr istal de un mismo Her a?clito
inconstante, que es el mismoY es otr o, como el r i?o inter minable. ??? It is also
like the r iver with no end [W. S. Mer win] That flows and r emains and is the mir r or
of one same Inconstant Her aclitus, who is the sameAnd is another , like the r iver
with no end. ??? UNA ROSA Y MILTON De las gener aciones de las r osas Que en el
fondo del tiempo se han per dido Quier o que una se salve del olvido, Una sin mar ca o
signo entr e las cosas Que fuer on. El destino me depar a Este don de nombr ar por vez
pr imer a Esa flor silenciosa, la postr er aRosa que Milton acer co? a su car a, Sin
ver la. Oh tu?, ber meja o amar illa O blanca r osa de un jar di?n bor r ado, Deja ma?
gicamente tu pasado Inmemor ial y en este ver so br illa, Or o, sangr e o mar fil o
tenebr osa Como en sus manos, invisible r osa. ??? A ROSE AND MILTON Fr om all the
gener ations of past r oses, Disintegr ated in the depths of time,I want one to be
spar ed oblivion--One unexceptional r ose fr om all the things Which once existed.
Destiny allows me The pr ivilege of choosing, this fir st time, That silent flower ,
the ver y final r oseThat Milton held befor e his face, but could Not see. O r ose,
ver milion or yellowOr white, fr om some obliter ated gar den, Your past existence
magically lastsAnd glows for ever in this poetr y,Gold or blood-color ed, ivor y or
shadowed, As once in Milton's hands, invisible r ose. [Alastair Reid] ??? A QUIEN YA
NO ES JOVEN Ya puedes ver el tr a?gico escenar io Y cada cosa en el lugar debido; La
espada y la ceniza par a DidoY la moneda par a Belisar io.?A que? sigues buscando en
el br umoso Br once de los hexa?metr os la guer r aSi esta?n aqui? los siete pies de
tier r a,La br usca sangr e y el abier to foso? Aqui? te acecha el insondable espejo Que
son?ar a? y olvidar a? el r eflejoDe tus postr imer i?as y agoni?as.Ya te cer ca lo u?
ltimo. Es la casa Donde tu lenta y br eve tar de pasa Y la calle que ves todos los
di?as. ??? TO ONE NO LONGER YOUNG Alr eady you can see the tr agic settingAnd each
thing ther e in its appointed place;The br oadswor d and the ash destined for Dido,
The coin pr epar ed for Belisar ius.Who do you go on sear ching in the fur tive Br onze
of Gr eek hexameter s for war When these six feet of gr ound wait for you her e, The
sudden r ush of blood, the yawning gr ave? Her e watching you is the inscr utable glass
Which will dr eam up and then for get the face Of all your dwindling days, your
agony.The last one now dr aws in. It is the houseIn which your slow, br ief evening
comes to pass And the str eet fr ont that you look at ever y day. [Alastair Reid] ???
ODISEA, LIBRO VIGESIMO TERCERO Ya la espada de hier r o ha ejecutado La debida labor
de la venganza;Ya los a?sper os dar dos y la lanzaLa sangr e del per ver so han
pr odigado. A despecho de un dios y de sus mar es A su r eino y su r eina ha vuelto
Ulises, A despecho de un dios y de los gr ises Vientos y del estr e?pito de Ar es.Ya
en el amor del compar tido lecho Duer me la clar a r eina sobr e el pechoDe su r ey
per o ?do?nde esta? aquel hombr e Que en los di?as y noches del destier r o Er r aba por
el mundo como un per r oY deci?a que Nadie er a su nombr e? ??? ODYSSEY, BOOK TWENTY-
THREE Now has the r apier of ir on wr oughtThe wor k of justice, and r evenge is done.
Now spear and ar r ows, pitiless ever y one,Have made the blood of insolence r un out.
For all a god and all his seas could doUlysses has r etur ned to r ealm and queen.For
all a god could do, and the gr ey-gr een Gales and Ar es' mur der ous hullabaloo.Now in
the love of their own br idal bedThe shining queen has fallen asleep, her head Upon
her king's br east. Wher e is that man now Who in his exile wander ed night and day
Over the wor ld like a wild dog, and would say His name was No One, No One, anyhow?
[Rober t Fitzger ald] ??? A UN POETA MENOR DE ???? Dejar un ver so par a la hor a tr iste
Que en el confi?n del di?a nos acecha, Ligar tu nombr e a su doliente fecha De or o y
de vaga sombr a. Eso quisiste. ? Con que? pasio?n, al declinar el di?a, Tr abajar i?as
el extr an?o ver soQue, hasta la disper sio?n del univer so, La hor a de extr an?o azul
confir mar i?a! No se? si lo logr aste ni siquier a,Vago her mano mayor , si has
existido, Per o estoy solo y quier o que el olvido Restituya a los di?as tu liger a
Sombr a par a este ya cansado alar deDe unas palabr as en que este? la tar de. ??? TO A
MINOR POET OF ???? To leave behind a ver se for that sad hour Lying in wait for us at
the day's close,To link your name with its fading goldAnd lengthening shadow: that
was your
desir e. With what passion when the day was thr ough You labor ed over that str ange
line, which would, Until the dissolution of the wor ld,Affir m that special hour and
its str ange blue! Whether you found it, I don't know, or even, Vague elder br other ,
whether you wer e r eal, But I'm alone, I wish oblivionWould give your weightless
ghost back to the days To aid this wear y wor d-show that designsTo hold the evening
fixed within its lines. [William Fer guson] ??? TEXAS Aqui? tambie?n. Aqui?, como en
el otr o Confi?n del continente, el infinito Campo en que muer e solitar io el gr ito;
Aqui? tambie?n el indio, el lazo, el potr o. Aqui? tambie?n el pa?jar o secr etoQue
sobr e los fr agor es de la histor ia Canta par a una tar de y su memor ia;Aqui? tambie?n
el mi?stico alfabetoDe los astr os, que hoy dictan a mi ca?lamo Nombr es que el
incesante laber intoDe los di?as no ar r astr a: San JacintoY esas otr as Ter mopilas, el
Alamo. Aqui? tambie?n esa desconocidaY ansiosa y br eve cosa que es la vida. ???
TEXAS Her e too. Her e as at the other edge Of the hemispher e, an endless plain Wher e
a man's cr y dies a lonely death. Her e too the Indian, the lasso, the wild hor se.
Her e too the bir d that never shows itself, That sings for the memor y of one evening
Over the r umblings of histor y;Her e too the mystic alphabet of star s Leading my pen
over the page to names Not swept aside in the continual Labyr inth of days: San
JacintoAnd that other Ther mopylae, the Alamo. Her e too the never under stood,
Anxious, and br ief affair that is life. [Mar k Str and] ??? COMPOSICION ESCRITAEN UN
EJEMPLAR DE LA GESTA DE BEOWULF A veces me pr egunto que? r azonesMe mueven a
estudiar sin esper anzaDe pr ecisio?n, mientr as mi noche avanza, La lengua de los a?
sper os sajones.Gastada por los an?os la memor iaDeja caer la en vano r epetidaPalabr a
y es asi? como mi vidaTeje y desteje su cansada histor ia.Ser a? (me digo entonces)
que de un modo Secr eto y suficiente el alma sabeQue es inmor tal y que su vasto y
gr ave Ci?r culo abar ca todo y puede todo.Ma?s alla? de este afa?n y de este ver soMe
aguar da inagotable el univer so.??? POEM WRITTEN IN A COPYOF BEOWULFAt var ious
times I have asked myself what r easons Moved me to study while my night came down,
Without par ticular hope of satisfaction,The language of the blunt-tongued Anglo-
Saxons. Used up by the year s my memor yLoses its gr ip on wor ds that I have vainly
Repeated and r epeated. My life in the same way Weaves and unweaves its wear y
histor y.Then I tell myself: it must be that the soulHas some secr et sufficient way
of knowingThat it is immor tal, that its vast encompassing Cir cle can take in all,
can accomplish all. Beyond my anxiety and beyond this wr iting The univer se waits,
inexhaustible, inviting. [Alastair Reid] ??? HENGEST CYNING EPITAFIO DEL REYBajo la
piedr a yace el cuer po de Hengist Que fundo? en estas islas el pr imer r eino De la
estir pe de Odi?nY sacio? el hambr e de las a?guilas.HABLA EL REYNo se? que? r unas
habr a? mar cado el hier r o en la piedr a Per o mis palabr as son e?stas:Bajo los cielos
yo fui Hengist el mer cenar io.Vendi? mi fuer za y mi cor aje a los r eyesDe las
r egiones del ocaso que lindanCon el mar que se llamaEl Guer r er o Ar mado de Lanza,
Per o la fuer za y el cor aje no sufr enQue las vendan los hombr esY asi?, despue?s de
haber acuchillado en el Nor teA los enemigos del r ey br itano,Le quite? la luz y la
vida.Me place el r eino que gane? con la espada;Hay r i?os par a el r emo y par a la r ed
Y lar gos ver anosY tier r a par a el ar ado y par a la haciendaY br itanos par a tr abajar la
Y ciudades de piedr a que entr egar emosA la desolacio?n,Por que las habitan los
muer tos.Yo se? que a mis espaldasMe tildan de tr aidor los br itanos,Per o yo he sido
fiel a mi valenti?aY no he confiado mi destino a los otr osY ningu?n hombr e se
animo? a tr aicionar me.??? HENGEST CYNING THE K ING'S EPITAPHBeneath this stone lies
the body of Hengist Who founded in these islands the fir st kingdom Of the r oyal
house of OdinAnd glutted the scr eaming eagle's gr eed.THE K ING SPEAK SI know not what
r unes will be scr aped on the stone But my wor ds ar e these:Beneath the heavens I was
Hengist the mer cenar y. My might and my cour age I mar keted to kings Whose lands lay
west over the water Her e at the edge of the seaCalled the Spear -War r ior ;But a man's
might and his cour age canNot long bear being sold,And so after cutting down all
thr ough the Nor th The foes of the Br iton king,Fr om him too I took light and life
together .I like this kingdom that I seized with my swor d;It has r iver s for the net
and the oar And long seasons of sunAnd soil for the plough and for husbandr yAnd
Br itons for wor king the far msAnd cities of stone which we shall allowTo cr umble to
r uin,Because ther e dwell the ghosts of the dead.But behind my back I knowThese
Br itons br and me tr aitor ,Yet I have been tr ue to my deeds and my dar ing And to
other men's car e never yielded my destiny And no one dar ed ever betr ay me. [Nor man
Thomas di Giovanni] ??? FRAGMENTO Una espada,Una espada de hier r o for jada en el
fr i?o del alba, Una espada con r unasQue nadie podr a? desoi?r ni descifr ar del todo,
Una espada del Ba?ltico que ser a? cantada enNor tumbr ia,Una espada que los poetas
Igualar a?n al hielo y al fuego,Una espada que un r ey dar a? a otr o r ey Y este r ey a
un suen?o,Una espada que ser a? lealHasta una hor a que ya sabe el Destino, Una
espada que iluminar a? la batalla.Una espada par a la mano Que r egir a? la her mosa
batalla, el tejido de hombr es, Una espada par a la manoQue enr ojecer a? los dientes
del loboY el despiadado pico del cuer vo,Una espada par a la manoQue pr odigar a? el
or o r ojo,Una espada par a la manoQue dar a? muer te a la ser piente en su lecho de or o,
Una espada par a la manoQue ganar a? un r eino y per der a? un r eino,Una espada par a la
manoQue der r ibar a? la selva de lanzas.Una espada par a la mano de Beowulf. ???
FRAGMENT A swor d,An ir on swor d hammer ed out in the cold of dawn, A swor d car ved
with r unesThat no one will over look, that no one will inter pr etin full,A swor d fr om
the Baltic that will be celebr ated inNor thumbr ia,A swor d that poetsWill equate to
ice and fir e,A swor d that will be handed fr om king to king And fr om king to dr eam,A
swor d that will be loyalTo an hour known only to Destiny,A swor d that will light up
the battle.A swor d to fit the handThat will guide the beautiful battle, the web of
men, A swor d to fit the handThat will stain with blood the wolf's fangsAnd the
r aven's r uthless beak,A swor d to fit the handThat will squander r ed gold,A swor d to
fit the handThat will deal death to the ser pent in its golden lair , A swor d to fit
the handThat will gain a kingdom and lose a kingdom,A swor d to fit the handThat
will br ing down the for est of spear s.A swor d to fit the hand of Beowulf.[Nor man
Thomas di Giovanni] ??? A UN POETA SAJON Tu? cuya came que hoy es polvo y planeta
Peso? como la nuestr a sobr e la tier r a,Tu? cuyos ojos vier on el sol, esa famosa
estr ella,Tu? que viviste no en el r i?gido ayer Sino en el incesante pr esente,En el
u?ltimo punto y a?pice ver tiginoso del tiempo, Tu? que en tu monaster io fuiste
llamadoPor la antigua voz de la e?pica,Tu? que tejiste las palabr as,Tu? que
cantaste la victor ia de Br unanbur hY no la atr ibuiste al Sen?or Sino a la espada de
tu r ey,Tu? que con ju?bilo fer oz cantaste las espadas de hier r o,La ver gu?enza del
viking,El festi?n del cuer vo y del a?guila,Tu? que en la oda militar congr egaste
Las r ituales meta?for as de la estir pe,Tu? que en un tiempo sin histor iaViste en el
ahor a el ayer Y en el sudor y sangr e de Br unanbur h Un cr istal de antiguas aur or as,
Tu? que tanto quer i?as a tu Inglater r aY no la nombr aste,Hoy no er es otr a cosa que
unas palabr as Que los ger manistas anotan.Hoy no er es otr a cosa que mi voz Cuando
r evive tus palabr as de hier r o. ??? TO A SAXON POET You whose flesh, now dust and
planet,Once weighed like our s on ear th,Whose eyes took in the sun, that famous
star , You who lived not in the r igid pastBut in a ceaseless pr esentAt the topmost
point and dizzying apex of time,Who in your monaster y hear d the callOf the epic's
ancient voice,Who wove wor dsAnd sang the victor y at Br unanbur h,Ascr ibing it not to
GodBut to your king's swor d edge,You who with fier ce joy celebr ated swor ds hammer ed
out of ir on,The Nor seman's shame,The banquet of r aven and eagle,Gather ing in your
militar y odeThe r itual metaphor s of your kin,You who in an age without histor ySaw
in the pr esent the pastAnd in the blood and sweat of Br unanbur h A mir r or of ancient
sunr ises,You who so much loved your England And did not name her --Today you ar e but
a few wor dsThat Ger manic scholar s annotate;Today you ar e my voiceWhen it calls back
to life your ir on wor ds.??? Pido a mis dioses o a la suma del tiempoQue mis di?as
mer ezcan el olvido,Que mi nombr e sea Nadie como el de Ulises, Per o que algu?n ver so
per dur eEn la noche pr opicia a la memor iaO en las man?anas de los hombr es. ??? Of my
gods or of the sum of time I ask That my days attain oblivion,That like Ulysses I
may be called No One, But that some ver se of mine sur viveOn a night favor able to
memor y Or in the mor nings of men. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??? SNORRI STURLUSON
(????-????) Tu?, que legaste una mitologi?aDe hielo y fuego a la filial memor ia,
Tu?, que fijaste la violenta glor iaDe tu estir pe ger ma?nica y br avia, Sentiste con
asombr o en una tar de De espadas que tu tr iste car ne humana Temblaba. En esa tar de
sin man?ana Te fue dado saber que er as cobar de. En la noche de Islandia, la salobr e
Bor r asca mueve el mar . Esta? cer cada Tu casa. Has bebido hasta las hecesEl deshonor
inolvidable. Sobr eTu pa?lida cabeza cae la espadaComo en tu libr o cayo? tantas
veces. ??o SNORRI STURLUSON (????-????) You, who bequeathed a mythology Of ice and
fir e to filial r ecall,Who chr onicled the violent
glor yOf your defiant Ger manic stock, Discover ed in amazement one nightOf swor ds
that your untr ustwor thy flesh Tr embled. On that night without sequel You r ealized
you wer e a cowar d. . . .In the dar kness of Iceland the saltWind moves the mounting
sea. Your house is Sur r ounded. You have dr unk to the dr egs Unfor gettable dishonor .
OnYour head, your sickly face, falls the swor d As it fell so often in your book.
[Richar d Howar d and Ce?sar Renner t] ??? A CARLOS XII Viking de las estepas, Car los
doceDe Suecia, que cumpliste aquel camino Del Septentr io?n al Sur de tu divino
Antecesor Odi?n, fuer on tu goceLos tr abajos que mueven la memor ia De los hombr es al
canto, la batalla Mor tal, el dur o hor r or de la metr alla, La fir me espada y la
sangr ienta glor ia.Supiste que vencer o ser vencido Son car as de un Azar
indifer ente, Que no hay otr a vir tud que ser valiente Y que el ma?r mol, al fin,
ser a? el olvido. Ar des glacial, ma?s solo que el desier to; Nadie llego? a tu alma y
ya esta?s muer to. ??? TO CHARLES XII OF SWEDEN Viking of the steppes, who followed
That r oad fr om Nor th to South of your Divine ancestor Odin, suchWer e your delights:
the deeds that moveThe memor y of men to song, Mor tal combat, the har d hor r or Of
gr apeshot, the sudden swor d and Bloody fame. You knew that successAnd defeat ar e
faces of Chance, The Indiffer ent; that ther e is no Vir tue but valor : a statueIs no
mor e than oblivion. Ar ctic, ablaze, alone, no one Reached your soul and now you ar e
dead. [Richar d Howar d and Ce?sar Renner t] ??? EMANUEL SWEDENBORG Ma?s alto que los
otr os, caminabaAquel hombr e lejano entr e los hombr es; Apenas si llamaba por sus
nombr es Secr etos a los a?ngeles. Mir abaLo que no ven los ojos ter r enales:La
ar diente geometr i?a, el cr istalino Laber into de Dios y el r emolino So?r dido de los
goces infer nales.Sabi?a que la Glor ia y el Aver noEn tu alma esta?n y sus mitologi?
as;Sabi?a, como el gr iego, que los di?asDel tiempo son espejos del Eter no.En a?r ido
lati?n fue r egistr andoUltimas cosas sin por que? ni cuando. ??? EMANUEL SWEDENBORG
Taller than the other s, this man Walked, among them, at a distance, Now and then
calling the angelsBy their secr et names. He would see That which ear thly eyes do
not see: The fier ce geometr y, the cr ystal Labyr inth of God and the sor did Milling
of infer nal delights.He knew that Glor y and Hell tooAr e in your soul, with all
their myths; He knew, like the Gr eek, that the days Of time ar e Eter nity's mir r or s.
In dr y Latin he went on listingThe unconditional Last Things. [Richar d Howar d and
Ce?sar Renner t] ??? JONATHAN EDWARDS (????-????) Lejos de la ciudad, lejos del for o
Clamor oso y del tiempo, que es mudanza, Edwar ds, eter no ya, suen?a y avanzaA la
sombr a de a?r boles de or o.Hoy es man?ana y es ayer . No hay una Cosa de Dios en el
ser eno ambienteQue no lo exalte mister iosamente,El or o de la tar de o de la luna.
Piensa feliz que el mundo es un eter no Instr umento de ir a y que el ansiado Cielo
par a unos pocos fue cr eadoY casi par a todos el infier no.En el centr o puntual de la
mar an?aHay otr o pr isioner o, Dios, la Ar an?a. ??? JONATHAN EDWARDS (????-????)Far
fr om the Common, far fr om the loud City and fr om time, which is change, Edwar ds
dr eams, eter nal now, and comes Into the shadow of golden tr ees. Today Is tomor r ow
and yester day. Not one Thing of God's in the motionless wor ld Fails to exalt him
str angely--the goldOf the evening, or of the moon. Content, he knows the wor ld is
an eter nal Vessel of wr ath and that the coveted Heaven was cr eated for a fewAnd
Hell for almost all. ExactlyIn the center of the web ther e isAnother pr isoner , God,
the Spider . [Richar d Howar d and Ce?sar Renner t] ??? EMERSON Ese alto caballer o
amer icanoCier r a el volumen de Montaigne y saleEn busca de otr o goce que no vale
Menos, la tar de que ya exalta el llano. Hacia el hondo poniente y su declive, Hacia
el confi?n que ese poniente dor a, Camina por los campos como ahor aPor la memor ia de
quien esto escr ibe. Piensa: Lei? los libr os esencialesY otr os compuse que el oscur o
olvidoNo ha de bor r ar . Un dios me ha concedido Lo que es dado saber a los mor tales.
Por todo el continente anda mi nombr e; No he vivido. Quisier a ser otr o hombr e. ???
EMERSON Closing the heavy volume of Montaigne, The tall New Englander goes outInto
an evening which exalts the fields.It is a pleasur e wor th no less than r eading. He
walks towar d the final sloping of the sun, Towar d the landscape's gilded edge;He
moves thr ough dar kening fields as he moves now Thr ough the memor y of the one who
wr ites this down. He thinks: I have r ead the essential books And wr itten other s
which oblivionWill not efface. I have been allowedThat which is given mor tal man to
know. The whole continent knows my name.I have not lived. I want to be someone
else.[Mar k Str and] ??? EDGAR ALLAN POE Pompas del ma?r mol, negr a anatomi?a Que
ultr ajan los gusanos sepulcr ales, Del tr iunfo de la muer te los glaciales Si?mbolos
congr ego?. No los temi?a. Temi?a la otr a sombr a, la amor osa, Las comunes ventur as
de la gente; No lo cego? el metal r esplandeciente Ni el ma?r mol sepulcr al sino la
r osa. Como del otr o lado del espejoSe entr ego? solitar io a su complejo Destino de
inventor de pesadillas. Quiza?, del otr o lado de la muer te, Sigue er igiendo
solitar io y fuer te Esple?ndidas y atr oces mar avillas. ??? EDGAR ALLAN POE Mar ble
splendor s, black anatomySlander ed by the wor m in the winding sheet-- All the cold
symbols he collectedOf death's victor y. And fear ed them not.What he fear ed was that
other shadow,Love's, the usual happiness ofMost People; he was not blinded by
Bur nished metal or mar ble, but by the r ose.As if on the wr ong side of the mir r or ,He
yielded, solitar y, to his r ichFate of fabr icating nightmar es. Per haps, On the wr ong
side of death, solitar y And unyielding, he devises mor e Magnificent and atr ocious
mar vels still. [Richar d Howar d and Ce?sar Renner t] ??? CAMDEN, ???? El olor del
cafe? y de los per io?dicos. El domingo y su tedio. La man?ana Y en la entr evista
pa?gina esa vana Publicacio?n de ver sos alego?r icosDe un colega feliz. El hombr e
viejo Esta? postr ado y blanco en su decente Habitacio?n de pobr e. Ociosamente Mir a
su car a en el cansado espejo. Piensa, ya sin asombr o, que esa car a Es e?l. La
distr ai?da mano tocaLa tur bia bar ba y la saqueada boca. No esta? lejos el fin. Su
voz declar a: Casi no soy, per o mis ver sos r itman La vida y su esplendor . Yo fui
Walt Whitman.??? CAMDEN ???? The fr agr ance of coffee and newspaper s. Sunday and
its tedium. This mor ning, On the uninvestigated page, that vain Column of
allegor ical ver sesBy a happy colleague. The old man lies Pr ostr ate, pale, even
white in his decent Room, the r oom of a poor man. Needlessly He glances at his face
in the exhausted Mir r or . He thinks, without sur pr ise now, That face is me. One
fumbling hand touches The tangled bear d, the devastated mouth. The end is not far
off. His voice declar es: I am almost gone. But my ver ses scanLife and its splendor .
I was Walt Whitman. [Richar d Howar d and Ce?sar Renner t] ??? PARIS, ???? La lar ga
postr acio?n lo ha acostumbr ado A anticipar la muer te. Le dar i?aMiedo salir al
clamor oso di?aY andar entr e los hombr es. Der r ibado, Enr ique Heine piensa en aquel
r i?o,El tiempo, que lo aleja lentamenteDe esa lar ga penumbr a y del doliente Destino
de ser hombr e y ser judi?o. Piensa en las delicadas melodi?asCuyo instr umento fue,
per o bien sabe Que el tr ino no es del a?r bol ni del ave Sino del tiempo y de sus
vagos di?as. No han de salvar te, no, tus r uisen?or es, Tus noches de or o y tus
cantadas flor es. ??? PARIS ???? A long pr ostr ation has addicted himTo pr esuming on
death: he would not dar e Enter the chatter ing daylight nowAnd ventur e among men.
Br oken, unhinged, Heinr ich Heine thinks of that slow r iver Time, which fer r ies him
acr oss the long Dimness and which divides him fr omThe painful fate of being a man,
A Jew. He thinks of the fr agile songsWhose instr ument he was, although he knows The
tune is not the tr ee's, and not the bir d's-- The tune is time's and comes fr om his
pale days.They cannot save you, your lar ks, your doves, Nor all your golden nights
and famous flower s. [Richar d Howar d and Ce?sar Renner t] ??? RAFAEL CANSINOS-ASSENS
La imagen de aquel pueblo lapidadoY execr ado, inmor tal en su agoni?a,En las negr as
vigilias lo atr ai?aCon una suer te de ter r or sagr ado. Bebio? como quien bebe un
hondo vino Los Salmos y el Cantar de la Escr itur a Y sintio? que er a suya esa
dulzur aY sintio? que er a suyo aquel destino. Lo llamaba Isr ael. IntimamenteLa oyo?
Cansinos como oyo? el pr ofeta En la secr eta cumbr e la secr etaVoz del Sen?or desde
la zar za ar diente. Acompa?n?eme siempr e su memor ia; Las otr as cosas las dir a? la
glor ia. ??? RAFAEL CANSINOS-ASSENS The image of such a people, detestedAnd stoned,
and in their suffer ing eter nal,In all the blackness of their fear ful vigilDr ew him
on with a kind of holy dr ead.As with deep dr inks of vintage, so did he Dr ink the
Psalms and the Song of Solomon; He felt that such a sweetness was his own, He felt
that all this was his destiny.Isr ael called him. And Cansinos hear dHer intimately,
as Moses the pr ophetHear d at the secr et summit the secr et wor d Of the Lor d talking
fr om the bur ning thicket. Then let his memor y walk with me for ever ; And all the
r est of it glor y will tell of. [John Hollander ] ??? LOS ENIGMAS Yo que soy el que
ahor a esta? cantando Ser e? man?ana el mister ioso, el muer to, El mor ador de un ma?
gico y desier to Or be sin antes ni despue?s ni cuando. Asi? afir ma la mi?stica. Me
cr eoIndigno del Infier no o de la Glor ia,Per o nada pr edigo. Nuestr a histor ia Cambia
como las for mas de Pr oteo.?Que? er r ante laber into, que? blancur aCiega de r esplandor
ser a? mi suer te,Cuando me entr egue el fin de esta aventur a La cur iosa exper iencia
de la muer te? Quier o beber su cr istalino
Olvido,Ser par a siempr e; per o no haber sido. ??? THE ENIGMAS I who am singing
these lines todayWill be tomor r ow the enigmatic cor pseWho dwells in a r ealm,
magical and bar r en, Without a befor e or an after or a when.So say the mystics. I
say I believeMyself undeser ving of Heaven or of Hell,But make no pr edictions. Each
man's taleShifts like the water y for ms of Pr oteus.What er r ant labyr inth, what
blinding flashOf splendor and glor y shall become my fate When the end of this
adventur e pr esents me with The cur ious exper ience of death?I want to dr ink its
cr ystal-pur e oblivion,To be for ever ; but never to have been. [John Updike] ??? A
QUIEN ESTA LEYENDOME Er es invulner able. ?No te han dadoLos nu?menes que r igen tu
destino Cer tidumbr e de polvo? ?No es acaso Tu ir r ever sible tiempo el de aquel r i?o
En cuyo espejo Her a?clito vio el si?mbolo De su fugacidad? Te esper a el ma?r mol Que
no leer a?s. En e?l ya esta?n escr itosLa fecha, la ciudad y el epitafio.Suen?os del
tiempo son tambie?n los otr os, No fir me br once ni acendr ado or o;El univer so es,
como tu?, Pr oteo. Sombr a, ir a?s a la sombr a que te aguar da Fatal en el confi?n de
tu jomada; Piensa que de algu?n modo ya esta?s muer to.??? TO MY READER You ar e
invulner able. Have they not shown you, The power s that pr eor dain your destiny,The
cer tainty of dust? Is not your timeAs ir r ever sible as that same r iver Wher e
Her aclitus, mir r or ed, saw the symbolOf fleeting life? A mar ble slab awaits youWhich
you will not r ead--on it, alr eady wr itten, The date, the city, and the epitaph.
Other men too ar e only dr eams of time,Not ever lasting br onze nor shining gold;The
univer se is, like you, a Pr oteus.Dar k, you will enter the dar kness that expects
you, Doomed to the limits of your tr aveled time. K now that in some sense you by now
ar e dead. [Alastair Reid] ??? ALGUIEN Un hombr e tr abajado por el tiempo,un hombr e
que ni siquier a esper a la muer te(las pr uebas de la muer te son estadi?sticasy nadie
hay que no cor r a el albur de ser el pr imer inmor tal),un hombr e que ha apr endido a
agr adecer las modestas limosnas de los di?as:el suen?o, la r utina, el sabor del
agua,una no sospechada etimologi?a,un ver so latino o sajo?n,la memor ia de una mujer
que lo ha abandonado hace ya tantos an?osque hoy puede r ecor dar la sin amar gur a,un
hombr e que no ignor a que el pr esenteya es el por venir y el olvido,un hombr e que ha
sido deslealy con el que fuer on desleales,puede sentir de pr onto, al cr uzar la
calle,una mister iosa felicidadque no viene del lado de la esper anzasino de una
antigua inocencia,de su pr opia r ai?z o de un dios disper so.Sabe que no debe mir ar la
de cer ca, por que hay r azones ma?s ter r ibles que tigr es que le demostr ar a?n su
obligacio?nde ser un desdichado,per o humildemente r ecibeesa felicidad, esa r a?faga.
??? SOMEONE A man wor n down by time,a man who does not even expect death (the
pr oofs of death ar e statisticsand ever yone r uns the r iskof being the fir st
immor tal),a man who has lear ned to expr ess thanks for the days' modest alms:sleep,
r outine, the taste of water ,an unsuspected etymology,a Latin or Saxon ver se,the
memor y of a woman who left him thir ty year s ago nowwhom he can call to mind without
bitter ness, a man who is awar e that the pr esentis both futur e and oblivion,a man
who has betr ayedand has been betr ayed,may feel suddenly, when cr ossing the str eet,
a myster ious happinessnot coming fr om the side of hopebut fr om an ancient
innocence, fr om his own r oot or fr om some diffused god. He knows better than to
look at it closely, for ther e ar e r easons mor e ter r ible than tiger s which will
pr ove to himthat wr etchedness is his duty,but he accepts humblythis felicity, this
glimmer .??? Quiza? en la muer te par a siempr e ser emos, cuando el polvo sea polvo,
esa indescifr able r ai?z,de la cual par a siempr e cr ecer a?, ecua?nime o atr oz,nuestr o
solitar io cielo o infier no. ??? Per haps in death when the dust is dust, we will be
for ever this undecipher able r oot,fr om which will gr ow for ever , ser ene or hor r ible,
our solitar y heaven or hell. [W. S. Mer win] ??? EVERNESS So?lo una cosa no hay. Es
el olvido. Dios, que salva el metal, salva la escor ia Y cifr a en Su pr ofe?tica
memor iaLas lunas que ser a?n y las que han sido. Ya todo esta?. Los miles de
r eflejos Que entr e los dos cr epu?sculos del di?a Tu r ostr o fue dejando en los
espejos Y los que ir a? dejando todavi?a.Y todo es una par te del diver so Cr istal de
esa memor ia, el univer so; No tienen fin sus ar duos cor r edor esY las puer tas se
cier r an a tu paso;So?lo del otr o lado del ocasoVer a?s los Ar quetipos y Esplendor es.
??? EVERNESS One thing does not exist: Oblivion.God saves the metal and he saves
the dr oss,And his pr ophetic memor y guar ds fr om lossThe moons to come, and those of
evenings gone. Ever ything is: the shadows in the glassWhich, in between the day's
two twilights, you Have scatter ed by the thousands, or shall str ew Hencefor war d in
the mir r or s that you pass.And ever ything is par t of that diver seCr ystalline memor y,
the univer se; Whoever thr ough its endless mazes wander sHear s door on door click
shut behind his str ide, And only fr om the sunset's far ther sideShall view at last
the Ar chetypes and the Splendor s. [Richar d Wilbur ] ??? EWIGK EIT Tome en mi boca el
ver so castellano A decir lo que siempr e esta? diciendo Desde el lati?n de Se?neca:
el hor r endo Dictamen de que todo es del gusano. Tome a cantar la pa?lida ceniza,Los
fastos de la muer te y la victor iaDe esa r eina r eto?r ica que pisaLos estandar tes de
la vanaglor ia.No asi?. Lo que mi bar r o ha bendecido No lo voy a negar como un
cobar de.Se? que una cosa no hay. Es el olvido;Se? que en la eter nidad per dur a y
ar de Lo mucho y lo pr ecioso que he per dido: Esa fr agua, esa luna y esa tar de. ???
EWIGK EIT Tur n on my tongue, O Spanish ver se; confir m Once mor e what Spanish ver se
has always said Since Seneca's black Latin; speak your dr ead Sentence that all is
fodder for the wor m.Come, celebr ate once mor e pale ash, pale dust, The pomps of
death and the tr iumphant cr own Of that bombastic queen who tr amples down The petty
banner s of our pr ide and lust.Enough of that. What things have blessed my clay Let
me not cr avenly deny. The oneWor d of no meaning is Oblivion,And havened in
eter nity, I know,My many pr ecious losses bur n and stay:That for ge, that night, that
r isen moon aglow. [Richar d Wilbur ] ??? EDIPO Y EL ENIGMA Cuadr u?pedo en la aur or a,
alto en el di?aY con tr es pies er r ando por el vano Ambito de la tar de, asi? vei?aLa
eter na esfinge a su inconstante her mano, El hombr e, y con la tar de un hombr e vino
Que descifr o? ater r ado en el espejoDe la monstr uosa imagen, el r eflejo De su
declinacio?n y su destino. Somos Edipo y de un eter no modo La lar ga y tr iple bestia
somos, todo Lo que ser emos y lo que hemos sido. Nos aniquilar i?a ver la ingente
For ma de nuestr o ser ; piadosamente Dios nos depar a sucesio?n y olvido.??? OEDIPUS
AND THE RIDDLE At dawn four -footed, at midday er ect,And wander ing on thr ee legs in
the deser ted Spaces of after noon, thus the eter nalSphinx had envisioned her
changing br other Man, and with after noon ther e came a per son Decipher ing, appalled
at the monstr ous other Pr esence in the mir r or , the r eflectionOf his decay and of
his destiny.We ar e Oedipus; in some eter nal wayWe ar e the long and thr eefold beast
as well-- All that we will be, all that we have been.It would annihilate us all to
seeThe huge shape of our being; mer cifullyGod offer s us issue and oblivion. [John
Hollander ] ??? SPINOZA Las tr aslu?cidas manos del judi?oLabr an en la penumbr a los
cr istalesY la tar de que muer e es miedo y fr i?o. (Las tar des a las tar des son
iguales.)Las manos y el espacio de jacintoQue palidece en el confi?n del Ghetto
Casi no existen par a el hombr e quieto Que esta? son?ando un clar o laber into. No lo
tur ba la fama, ese r eflejoDe suen?os en el suen?o de otr o espejo, Ni el temer oso
amor de las doncellas. Libr e de la meta?for a y del mitoLabr a un ar duo cr istal: el
infinitoMapa de Aque?l que es todas Sus estr ellas.??? SPINOZA The Jew's hands,
tr anslucent in the dusk, Polish the lenses time and again.The dying after noon is
fear , isCold, and all after noons ar e the same. The hands and the hyacinth-blue air
That whitens at the Ghetto edgesDo not quite exist for this silentMan who conjur es
up a clear labyr inth-- Undistur bed by fame, that r eflectionOf dr eams in the dr eam
of another Mir r or , nor by maidens' timid love.Fr ee of metaphor and myth, he gr indsA
stubbor n cr ystal: the infiniteMap of the One who is all His star s. [Richar d Howar d
and Ce?sar Renner t] ??? ADAM CAST FORTH ?Hubo un Jar di?n o fue el Jar di?n un suen?
o? Lento en la vaga luz, me he pr eguntado, Casi como un consuelo, si el pasadoDe
que este Ada?n, hoy mi?ser o, er a duen?o, No fue sino una ma?gica impostur aDe aquel
Dios que son?e?. Ya es impr eciso En la memor ia el clar o Par ai?so,Per o yo se? que
existe y que per dur a, Aunque no par a mi?. La ter ca tier r aEs mi castigo y la
incestuosa guer r aDe Cai?nes y Abeles y su cr i?a.Y, sin embar go, es mucho haber
amado, Haber sido feliz, haber tocadoEl viviente Jar di?n, siquier a un di?a.???
ADAM CAST FORTH The Gar den--was it r eal or was it dr eam? Slow in the hazy light, I
have been asking, Almost as a comfor t, if the pastBelonging to this now unhappy
Adam Was nothing but a magic fantasyOf that God I dr eamed. Now it is impr ecise In
memor y, that lucid par adise,But I know it exists and will per sistThough not for me.
The unfor giving ear th Is my affliction, and the incestuous war sOf Cains and Abels
and their pr ogeny. Never theless, it means much to have loved, To have been happy,
to have touched upon The living Gar den, even for one day. [Alastair Reid] ??? A UNA
MONEDA Fr i?a y tor mentosa la noche que zar pe? de Montevideo. Al doblar el Cer r o,
tir e? desde la cubier ta ma?s altauna
moneda que br illo? y se anego? en las aguas bar r osas, una cosa de luz que
ar r ebatar on el tiempo y la tiniebla. Tuve la sensacio?n de haber cometido un acto
ir r evocable,de agr egar a la histor ia del planetados ser ies incesantes, par alelas,
quiza? infinitas:mi destino, hecho de zozobr a, de amor y de vanasvicisitudes,y el
de aquel disco de metalque las aguas dar i?an al blando abismoo a los r emotos mar es
que aun r oendespojos del sajo?n y del viking.A cada instante de mi suen?o o de mi
vigiliacor r esponde otr o de la ciega moneda.A veces he sentido r emor dimientoy otr as,
envidia,de ti que esta?s, como nosotr os, en el tiempo y su laber into y que no lo
sabes. ??? TO A COIN Cold and stor m-thr eatening the night I sailed fr om Montevideo.
Coming r ound the Cer r o,I flung a coin fr om the upper deckand watched it flash, then
sink into the mur k below--a thing of light swallowed up by time and dar kness.And
thr ough me went a sensation of having committed anir r evocable act,of adding to the
histor y of the planettwo incessant, par allel, and per haps infinite ser ies:my own
destiny, compounded of anxieties and love andpointless str uggles,and the destiny of
that metal diskwhich would be bor ne by tides into the soft chasm or out to r emote
seas still silently gnawingat Saxon or Viking spoils.Each moment of my sleep or my
wakingis matched by another of the blind coin's.At times I have felt r emor se,at
times, envy,of you, like us, walled in by time and its labyr inth without knowing
it. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??? OTRO POEMA DE LOS DONES Gr acias quier o dar al
divinoLaber into de los efectos y de las causasPor la diver sidad de las cr iatur asQue
for man este singular univer so,Por la r azo?n, que no cesar a? de son?ar Con un plano
del laber into,Por el r ostr o de Elena y la per sever ancia de Ulises, Por el amor , que
nos deja ver a los otr osComo los ve la divinidad,Por el fir me diamante y el agua
suelta,Por el a?lgebr a, palacio de pr ecisos cr istales,Por las mi?sticas monedas de
Angel Silesio, Por Schopenhauer ,Que acaso descifr o? el univer so,Por el fulgor del
fuegoQue ningu?n ser humano puede mir ar sin un asombr o antiguo,Por la caoba, el
cedr o y el sa?ndalo,Por el pan y la sal,Por el mister io de la r osaQue pr odiga color
y que no lo ve,Por cier tas vi?sper as y di?as de ????,Por los dur os tr oper os que en
la llanur a Ar r ean los animales y el alba,Por la man?ana en Montevideo,Por el ar te
de la amistad,Por el u?ltimo di?a de So?cr ates,Por las palabr as que en un cr epu?
sculo se dijer on De una cr uz a otr a cr uz,Por aquel suen?o del Islam que abar co? Mil
noches y una noche,Por aquel otr o suen?o del infier no,??? ANOTHER POEM OF GIFTS I
want to give thanks to the divine Labyr inth of causes and effectsFor the diver sity
of beingsThat for m this singular univer se,For Reason, that will never give up its
dr eam Of a map of the labyr inth,For Helen's face and the per sever ance of Ulysses,
For love, which lets us see other sAs God sees them,For the solid diamond and the
flowing water , For Algebr a, a palace of exact cr ystals,For the mystic coins of
Angelus Silesius, For Schopenhauer ,Who per haps decipher ed the univer se, For the
blazing of fir e,That no man can look at without an ancient wonder , For mahogany,
cedar , and sandalwood,For br ead and salt,For the myster y of the r oseThat spends all
its color and can not see it, For cer tain eves and days of ????,For the har d r ider s
who, on the plains, Dr ive on the cattle and the dawn,For mor nings in Montevideo,For
the ar t of fr iendship,For Socr ates' last day,For the wor ds spoken one twilight Fr om
one cr oss to another ,For that dr eam of Islam that embr aced A thousand nights and a
night,For that other dr eam of Hell,??? De la tor r e del fuego que pur ificaY de las
esfer as glor iosas,Por Swedenbor g,Que conver saba con los a?ngeles en las calles de
Londr es, Por los r i?os secr etos e inmemor ialesQue conver gen en mi?,Por el idioma
que, hace siglos, hable? en Nor tumbr ia, Por la espada y el ar pa de los sajones,Por
el mar , que es un desier to r esplandecienteY una cifr a de cosas que no sabemosY un
epitafio de los vikings,Por la mu?sica ver bal de Inglater r a,Por la mu?sica ver bal
de Alemania,Por el or o, que r elumbr a en los ver sos,Por el e?pico invier no,Por el
nombr e de un libr o que no he lei?do: Gesta Dei per Fr ancos,Por Ver laine, inocente
como los pa?jar os,Por el pr isma de cr istal y la pesa de br once,Por las r ayas del
tigr e,Por las altas tor r es de San Fr ancisco y de la isla deManhattan,Por la man?ana
en Texas,Por aquel sevillano que r edacto? la Epi?stola Mor alY cuyo nombr e, como e?l
hubier a pr efer ido, ignor amos, Por Se?neca y Lucano, de Co?r doba,Que antes del
espan?ol escr ibier onToda la liter atur a espan?ola,Por el geome?tr ico y bizar r o
ajedr ez,Por la tor tuga de Zeno?n y el mapa de Royce,Por el olor medicinal de los
eucaliptos,Por el lenguaje, que puede simular la sabidur i?a,Por el olvido, que
anula o modifica el pasado,Por la costumbr e,??? Of the tower of cleansing fir eAnd
of the celestial spher es,For Swedenbor g,Who talked with the angels in London
str eets, For the secr et and immemor ial r iver sThat conver ge in me,For the language
that, centur ies ago, I spoke inNor thumber land,For the swor d and har p of the Saxons,
For the sea, which is a shining deser tAnd a secr et code for things we do not know
And an epitaph for the Nor semen,For the wor d music of England,For the wor d music of
Ger many,For gold, that shines in ver ses,For epic winter ,For the title of a book I
have not r ead: Gesta Dei per Fr ancos,For Ver laine, innocent as the bir ds,For cr ystal
pr isms and br onze weights,For the tiger 's str ipes,For the high tower s of San
Fr ancisco and Manhattan Island, For mor nings in Texas,For that Sevillian who
composed the Mor al EpistleAnd whose name, as he would have wished, we do notknow,
For Seneca and Lucan, both of Cor dova,Who, befor e ther e was Spanish, had wr ittenAll
Spanish liter atur e,For gallant, noble, geometr ic chess,For Zeno's tor toise and
Royce's map,For the medicinal smell of eucalyptus tr ees,For speech, which can be
taken for wisdom,For for getfulness, which annuls or modifies the past, For habits,
??? Que nos r epite y nos confir ma como un espejo,Por la man?ana, que nos depar a la
ilusio?n de un pr incipio, Por la noche, su tiniebla y su astr onomi?a,Por el valor y
la felicidad de los otr os,Por la patr ia, sentida en los jazminesO en una vieja
espada,Por Whitman y Fr ancisco de Asi?s, que ya escr ibier on elpoema,Por el hecho de
que el poema es inagotableY se confunde con la suma de las cr iatur asY no llegar a?
jama?s al u?ltimo ver soY var i?a segu?n los hombr es,Por Fr ances Haslam, que pidio?
per do?n a sus hijos Por mor ir tan despacio,Por los minutos que pr eceden al suen?o,
Por el suen?o y la muer te,Esos dos tesor os ocultos,Por los i?ntimos dones que no
enumer o,Por la mu?sica, mister iosa for ma del tiempo. ??? Which r epeat us and
confir m us in our image like a mir r or , For mor ning, that gives us the illusion of a
new beginning, For night, its dar kness and its astr onomy,For the br aver y and
happiness of other s,For my countr y, sensed in jasmine flower sOr in an old swor d,For
Whitman and Fr ancis of Assisi, who alr eady wr ote thispoem,For the fact that the
poem is inexhaustibleAnd becomes one with the sum of all cr eated things And will
never r each its last ver seAnd var ies accor ding to its wr iter s,For Fr ances Haslam,
who begged her childr en's par don For dying so slowly,For the minutes that pr ecede
sleep,For sleep and death,Those two hidden tr easur es,For the intimate gifts I do
not mention,For music, that myster ious for m of time. [Alan Dugan] ??? ODA ESCRITA
EN ???? Nadie es la patr ia. Ni siquier a el jinete Que, alto en el alba de una plaza
desier ta, Rige un cor cel de br once por el tiempo, Ni los otr os que mir an desde el
ma?r mol, Ni los que pr odigar on su be?lica cenizaPor los campos de Ame?r icaO dejar on
un ver so o una hazan?aO la memor ia de una vida cabalEn el justo ejer cicio de los
di?as.Nadie es la patr ia. Ni siquier a los si?mbolos. Nadie es la patr ia. Ni
siquier a el tiempo Car gado de batallas, de espadas y de e?xodos Y de la lenta
poblacio?n de r egiones Que lindan con la aur or a y el ocaso, Y de r ostr os que van
envejeciendo En los espejos que se empan?anY de sufr idas agoni?as ano?nimas Que
dur an hasta el albaY de la telar an?a de la lluvia Sobr e negr os jar dines.La patr ia,
amigos, es un acto per petuo Como el per petuo mundo. (Si el Eter no Espectador dejar a
de son?amosUn solo instante, nos fulminar i?a,Blanco y br usco r ela?mpago, Su
olvido.) Nadie es la patr ia, per o todos debemos Ser dignos del antiguo jur amentoQue
pr estar on aquellos caballer osDe ser lo que ignor aban, ar gentinos,??? ODE WRITTEN
IN ???? No one is the homeland. Not even the r ider High in the dawn in the empty
squar e,Who guides a br onze steed thr ough time, Nor those other s who look out fr om
mar ble, Nor those who squander ed their mar tial ash Over the plains of Amer icaOr
left a ver se or an exploitOr the memor y of a life fulfilledIn the car eful exer cise
of their duties.No one is the homeland. Nor ar e the symbols.No one is the homeland.
Not even time Laden with battles, swor ds, exile after exile, And with the slow
peopling of r egions Str etching into the dawn and the sunset, And with faces gr owing
older In the dar kening mir r or s,And with anonymous agonies endur ed All night until
daybr eak,And with the cobweb of r ainOver black gar dens.The homeland, fr iends, is a
continuous act As the wor ld is continuous. (If the Eter nal Spectator wer e to cease
for one instantTo dr eam us, the white sudden lightning Of his oblivion would bur n
us up.)No one is the homeland, but we should all Be wor thy of that ancient oath
Which those gentlemen swor e-- To be something they didn't know, to be Ar gentines;
??? De ser lo que ser i?an por el hechoDe haber
jur ado en esa vieja casa. Somos el por venir de esos var ones,La justificacio?n de
aquellos muer tos; Nuestr o deber es la glor iosa car gaQue a nuestr a sombr a legan esas
sombr as Que debemos salvar .Nadie es la patr ia, per o todos los somos. Ar da en mi
pecho y en el vuestr o, incesante, Ese li?mpido fuego mister ioso. ??? To be what
they would be by vir tue Of the oath taken in that old house. We ar e the futur e of
those men, The justification of those dead.Our duty is the glor ious bur den
Bequeathed to our shadow by those shadows; It is our s to save.No one is the
homeland--it is all of us. May that clear , myster ious fir e bur n Without ceasing, in
my br east and your s. [W. S. Mer win] ??? LINEAS QUE PUDE HABER ESCRITO Y PERDIDO
HACIA ???? A Odile Bar o?n Super vielleSilenciosas batallas del ocaso en ar r abales u?
ltimos, siempr e antiguas der r otas de una guer r a en el cielo, albas r uinosas que nos
llegandesde el fondo desier to del espacio como desde el fondo del tiempo, negr os
jar dines de la lluvia, una esfinge en un libr o que yo teni?a miedo de abr ir y cuya
imagen vuelve en los suen?os,la cor r upcio?n y el eco que ser emos,la luna sobr e el
ma?r mol,a?r boles que se elevan y per dur ancomo divinidades tr anquilas,la mutua noche
y la esper ada tar de,Walt Whitman, cuyo nombr e es el univer so, la espada valer osa de
un r eyen el silencioso lecho de un r i?o,los sajones, los a?r abes y los godosque,
sin saber lo, me engendr ar on,?soy yo esas cosas y las otr aso son llaves secr etas y
ar duas a?lgebr asde lo que no sabr emos nunca? ??? LINES I MIGHT HAVE WRITTEN AND
LOST AROUND ????To Odile Bar o?n Super vielleSoundless battles of sunsetbeyond the
r agged edges of the city, the ancient r ecur r ing defeats of a war in heaven, r uinous
white dawns that come for us out of the empty ends of spaceas fr om the ends of
time,black gar dens of r ain, a sphinx in a book I was always afr aid to r eopenand
whose image comes back in dr eams,the cor r upted matter , the echo we shall be, the
moon on mar ble,tr ees that gr ow up dur ablelike untr oubled gods,the night shar ed, the
evening awaited,Walt Whitman, whose name is the univer se, a king's swor d useful in
battlelying at the soundless bed of a r iver ,the Saxons, the Moor s, the Gothswho
br ought me for th unknowing--am I these things, and other s,or ar e they secr et keys,
impossible algebr as of what we shall never know?[William Fer guson] ??? JUNIN Soy,
per o soy tambie?n el otr o, el muer to, El otr o de mi sangr e y de mi nombr e; Soy un
vago sen?or y soy el hombr eQue detuvo las lanzas del desier to. Vuelvo a Juni?n,
donde no estuve nunca, A tu Juni?n, abuelo Bor ges. ?Me oyes, Sombr a o ceniza u?
ltima, o desoyesEn tu suen?o de br once esta voz tr unca? Acaso buscas por mis vanos
ojosEl e?pico Juni?n de tus soldados,El a?r bol que plantaste, los cer cadosY en el
confi?n la tr ibu y los despojos. Te imagino sever o, un poco tr iste. Quie?n me dir a?
co?mo er as y quie?n fuiste. Juni?n, ??????? JUNIN I am myself and I am him today,
The man who died, the man whose blood and name Ar e mine: a str anger her e, yet with
the fameHe won keeping Indian spear s at bay.I come back to this Juni?n I've never
seen,To your Juni?n, gr andfather Bor ges. ShadowOr final ash, do you hear me now or
doYou ignor e this voice in your br onze sleep?Per haps thr ough these useless eyes you
seek in me That epic Juni?n of old--the cattle r aidsOn the hor izon's edge, the r ows
of palisades,Your mounted tr oops, the place you set a tr ee.I pictur e you as sad and
somewhat stem,But who and what you wer e I'll never lear n. [Nor man Thomas di
Giovanni] ??? UN SOLDADO DE LEE (????) Lo ha alcanzado una bala en la r iber a De una
clar a cor r iente cuyo nombr e Ignor a. Cae de boca. (Es ver dader a La histor ia y ma?s
de un hombr e fue aquel hombr e.) El air e de or o mueve las ociosasHojas de los
pinar es. La pacienteHor miga escala el r ostr o indifer ente.Sube el sol. Ya han
cambiado muchas cosas Y cambiar a?n sin te?r mino hasta cier toDi?a del por venir en
que te cantoA ti que, sin la da?diva del llanto,Cai?ste como cae un hombr e muer to.
No hay un ma?r mol que guar de tu memor ia; Seis pies de tier r a son tu oscur a glor ia.
??? A SOLDIER UNDER LEE (????) A bullet has caught this soldier by the bankOf some
br ight-r unning cr eek whose name he does Not know. He dr ops among the tr ees face
down. (This stor y is tr ue: the man was many men.)The golden air displays the
dr ooping needlesOf the r anks of for est pine. A patient antClumsily climbs the man's
unheeding face.The sun gets high. Alr eady many thingsHave changed and mor e will
change, without an end, Until a cer tain day when I will wr iteOf you who died
uncer emoniously,Falling in war the way a dead man falls.No mar ble mar ks the place
or tells your name;Six feet of gr ound ar e now your shr ed of fame. [Nor man Thomas di
Giovanni] ??? EL MAR Antes que el suen?o (o el ter r or ) tejier a Mitologi?as y
cosmogoni?as,Antes que el tiempo se acun?ar a en di?as,El mar , el siempr e mar , ya
estaba y er a. ?Quie?n es el mar ? ?Quie?n es aquel violento Y antiguo ser que r oe
los pilar esDel la tier r a y es uno y muchos mar esY abismo y r esplandor y azar y
viento? Quien lo mir a lo ve por vez pr imer a, Siempr e. Con el asombr o que las cosas
Elementales dejan, las her mosasTar des, la luna, el fuego de una hoguer a. ?Quie?n es
el mar , quie?n soy? Lo sabr e? el di?a Ulter ior que sucede a la agoni?a. ??? THE SEA
Befor e our human dr eam (or ter r or ) wove Mythologies, cosmogonies, and love,Befor e
time coined its substance into days,The sea, the always sea, existed: was.Who is
the sea? Who is that violent being, Violent and ancient, who gnaws the foundations
Of ear th? He is both one and many oceans;He is abyss and splendor , chance and wind.
Who looks on the sea, sees it the fir st time, Ever y time, with the wonder distilled
Fr om elementar y things--fr om beautiful Evenings, the moon, the leap of a bonfir e.
Who is the sea, and who am I? The day That follows my last agony shall say. [John
Updike] ??? UNA MAN?ANA DE ???? Car los avanza entr e su pueblo. Mir aA izquier da y a
der echa. Ha r echazadoLos br azos de la escolta. Liber adoDe la necesidad de la
mentir a,Sabe que hoy va a la muer te, no al olvido, Y que es un r ey. La ejecucio?n
lo esper a;La man?ana es atr oz y ver dader a.No hay temor en su car ne. Siempr e ha
sido, A fuer de buen tahur , indifer ente.Ha apur ado la vida hasta las heces;Ahor a
esta? solo entr e la ar mada gente.No lo infama el pati?bulo. Los juecesNo son el
Juez. Saluda levementeY sonr i?e. Lo ha hecho tantas veces. ??? A MORNING OF ????
Char les comes out among his people, looks Both left and r ight. Alr eady he has
waived The attendance of an escor t. Liber ated Fr om need of lies, he knows this ver y
day He goes to death, but not to oblivion-- That he is a king. The execution waits;
The mor ning is both ter r ible and tr ue. Ther e is no shiver in his body. He,Like a
good gambler , has always been Aloof. And he has dr unk life to the lees. Now he
moves singly in an ar med mob. The block does not dishonor him. The judges Ar e not
the Judge. Lightly he nods his head And smiles. He has done it now so many times.
[Alastair Reid] ??? A UN POETA SAJON La nieve de Nor tumbr ia ha conocidoY ha
olvidado la huella de tus pasosY son innumer ables los ocasosQue entr e nosotr os,
gr is her mano, han sido. Lento en la lenta sombr a labr ar i?asMeta?for as de espadas en
los mar esY del hor r or que mor a en los pinar esY de la soledad que tr aen los di?as. ?
Do?nde buscar tus r asgos y tu nombr e? Esas son cosas que el antiguo olvido Guar da.
Nunca sabr e? co?mo habr a? sido Cuando sobr e la tier r a fuiste un hombr e. Seguiste
los caminos del destier r o; Ahor a so?lo er es tu cantar de hier r o. ??? TO A SAXON
POET The snowfalls of Nor thumbr ia have knownAnd have for gotten the impr int of your
feet,And number less ar e the suns that now have set Between your time and mine, my
ghostly kinsman. Slow in the gr owing shadows you would fashion Metaphor s of swor ds
on the gr eat seasAnd of the hor r or lur king in the pine tr eesAnd of the loneliness
the days br ought in.Wher e can your featur es and your name be found? These ar e
things bur ied in oblivion.Now I shall never know how it must have been For you as a
living man who walked his gr ound. Exiled, you wander ed thr ough your lonely ways.
Now you live only in your ir on lays. [Alastair Reid] ??? EL LABERINTO Zeus no
podr i?a desatar las r edesDe piedr a que me cer can. He olvidado Los hombr es que antes
fui; sigo el odiado Camino de mono?tonas par edesQue es mi destino. Rectas galer i?as
Que se cur van en ci?r culos secr etosAl cabo de los an?os. Par apetosQue ha agr ietado
la usur a de los di?as.En el pa?lido polvo he descifr adoRastr os que temo. El air e me
ha tr ai?doEn las co?ncavas tar des un br amidoO el eco de un br amido desolado.Se? que
en la sombr a hay Otr o, cuya suer te Es fatigar las lar gas soledadesQue tejen y
destejen este HadesY ansiar mi sangr e y devor ar mi muer te. Nos buscamos los dos.
Ojala? fuer aEste el u?ltimo di?a de la esper a.??? THE LABYRINTH Zeus, Zeus himself
could not undo these nets Of stone encir cling me. My mind for gets The per sons I
have been along the way,The hated way of monotonous walls,Which is my fate. The
galler ies seem str aight But cur ve fur tively, for ming secr et cir clesAt the ter minus
of year s; and the par apetsHave been wor n smooth by the passage of days. Her e, in
the tepid alabaster dust,Ar e tr acks that fr ighten me. The hollow air Of evening
sometimes br ings a bellowing,Or the echo, desolate, of bellowing.I know that hidden
in the shadows ther e Lur ks another , whose task is to exhaustThe loneliness that
br aids and weaves this hell, To cr ave my blood, and to fatten on my death. We seek
each other . Oh, if only thisWer e the last day of our antithesis! [John Updike] ???
For the Guitar Par a las seis cuer das MILONGA DE DOS HERMANOS Tr aiga cuentos la
guitar r a De cuando
el fier r o br illaba, Cuentos de tr uco y de taba, De cuadr er as y de copas, Cuentos
de la Costa Br ava Y el Camino de las Tr opas.Venga una histor ia de ayer Que
apr eciar a?n los ma?s ler dos; El destino no hace acuer dosY nadie se lo r epr oche--Ya
estoy viendo que esta noche Vienen del Sur los r ecuer dos.Velay, sen?or es, la
histor iaDe los her manos Iber r a, Hombr es de amor y de guer r a Y en el peligr o
pr imer os,La flor de los cuchiller osY ahor a los tapa la tier r a.Suelen al hombr e
per der La sober bia o la codicia; Tambie?n el cor aje enviciaA quien le da noche y di?
a-- El que er a menor debi?aMa?s muer tes a la justicia.??? MILONGA OFTHE TWO
BROTHERSLet the guitar br ing us talesOf when the knives used to flash, Tales of
gambling and of dice, Hor se r aces and har d dr inking, Tales of the Costa Br avaAnd of
the old Dr over s' Tr ail.A stor y of yester dayOf appeal to all comer s; No deals can be
made with fate, So no one should r epr oach it-- I'm awar e now that tonight Memor ies
come fr om the South.Gentlemen, her e's the stor yOf the Iber r a br other s--Men of
loving and fighting, The fir st to r ush to danger , Flower of all knife fighter s, And
now they'r e six feet under .Things like pr ide and avar ice Always lead a man astr ay;
Cour age will also cor r uptIf pur sued both night and day. The younger of the two had
Mor e killings to his cr edit. ??? Cuando Juan Iber r a vio Que el menor lo
aventajaba, La paciencia se le acabaY le fue tendiendo un lazo. Le dio muer te de un
balazo, Alla? por la Costa Br ava.Asi? de maner a fielConte? la histor ia hasta el
fin; Es la histor ia de Cai?nQue sigue matando a Abel. ??? When Juan Iber r a noticed
The younger was way ahead, His patience r eached its limit And he set a tr ap for
him. Laid him dead with a bullet Ther e on the Costa Br ava.So in a tr uthful manner
I've told the tale to its end; It is the stor y of Cain Who goes on killing Abel.
[Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??? MILONGA DE ALBORNOZ Alguien ya conto? los di?as,
Alguien ya sabe la hor a, Alguien par a Quien no hay Ni pr emur as ni demor a.Albor noz
pasa silbando Una milonga entr er r iana; Bajo el ala del chamber go Sus ojos ven la
man?ana,La man?ana de este di?aDel ochocientos noventa; En el bajo del Retir oYa le
han per dido la cuentaDe amor es y de tr ucadas Hasta el alba y de entr ever os A fier r o
con los sar gentos, Con pr opios y for aster os.Se la tienen bien jur ada Ma?s de un
taur a y ma?s de un pillo; En una esquina del Sur Lo esta? esper ando un cuchillo.No
un cuchillo sino tr es, Antes de clar ear el di?a,Se le vinier on encimaY el hombr e se
defendi?a. ??? MILONGA OF ALBORNOZ Someone had measur ed out his time, Someone
mar ked his day,Someone to Whom no heed is paid Either hur r y or delay.Albor noz
str olls lightly whistling An Entr e Ri?os milonga;Under the br im of his cocky hat
His eyes take in the mor ning--The mor ning of this day far back In eighteen ninety-
one.Along the nor ther n water fr ont By now they've lost the sumOf the loves he had,
and car dgames played Ar ound the clock, or fr aysWith knives, battling neighbor s or
cops Or men he didn't know.Mor e than one tough, mor e than one cr ook Have had an eye
on him;Somewher e on a Southside str eetA knife awaits the man.Not just a single
knife but thr ee, Befor e the day gr ows light;They came at him behind his back And he
stood fir m to fight.??? Un acer o entr o? en el pecho, Ni se le movio? la car a;
Alejo Albor noz mur io? Como si no le impor tar a.Pienso que le gustar i?aSaber que hoy
anda su histor ia En una milonga. El tiempoEs olvido y es memor ia.??? A blade sank
deep into his chest-- On his face no pain or dr ead.As if it could not matter to him
Alejo Albor noz fell dead.I think he might have been pleased to know His tale is
told todayIn a milonga's lines. Time isOblivion and memor y. [Nor man Thomas di
Giovanni] ??? MuseumMuseo CUARTETA Mur ier on otr os, per o ello acontecio? en el
pasado, Que es la estacio?n (nadie lo ignor a) ma?s pr opiciaa la muer te.?Es posible
que yo, su?bdito de Yaqub Almansur , Muer a como tuvier on que mor ir las r osas y
Ar isto?teles? Del Diva?n de Almota?sim el Magr ebi? (siglo xii)??? QUATRAIN Other s
died, but that happened in the past,Which is the season (no one doesn't know this)
most pr opitiousfor death.Is it possible that I, a subject of Yaqub Almansur , Must
die the way the r oses and Ar istotle had to die? Fr om the Diva?n de Almota?sim el
Magr ebi (??th centur y) [Alan Dugan] ??? LIMITES Hay una li?nea de Ver laine que no
volver e? a r ecor dar , Hay una calle pr o?xima que esta? vedada a mis pasos, Hay un
espejo que me ha visto por u?ltima vez,Hay una puer ta que he cer r ado hasta el fin
del mundo. Entr e los libr os de mi biblioteca (estoy vie?ndolos)Hay alguno que ya
nunca abr ir e?. Este ver ano cumplir e? cincuenta an?os: La muer te me desgasta,
incesante. De Inscr ipciones (Montevideo, ????) de Julio Plater o Haedo ??? LIMITS
(OR GOOD-BYES) Ther e's a line of Ver laine's that I'm not going to r emember again.
Ther e's a near by str eet that's for bidden to my footsteps. Ther e's a mir r or that has
seen me for the last time. Ther e's a door I've closed until the end of the wor ld.
Among the books in my libr ar y (I'm looking at them) Ther e ar e some I'll never open
again.This summer I'll be fifty year s old: Death invades me, constantly. Fr om
Inscr ipciones by Julio Plater o Haedo (Montevideo, ????) [Alan Dugan] ??? EL POETA
DECLARA SU NOMBRADIA El ci?r culo del cielo mide mi glor ia,Las bibliotecas del
Or iente se disputan mis ver sos,Los emir es me buscan par a llenar me de or o la boca,
Los a?ngeles ya saben de memor ia mi u?ltimo ze?jel.Mis instr umentos de tr abajo son
la humillacio?n y la angustia; Ojala? yo hubier a nacido muer to. Del Diva?n de
Abulcasim el Hadr ami? (siglo xii) ??? THE POET TELLS OF HIS FAME The r im of the sky
is the measur e of my glor y, The libr ar ies of the East fight to own my ver ses, The
r uler s seek me out to fill my mouth with gold, The angels alr eady know my last
couplet by hear t. The tools of my ar t ar e humiliation and anguish. Oh, if only I
had been bor n dead! Fr om the Diva?n de Abulcasim el Hadr ami? (??th centur y)[W. S.
Mer win] ??? EL ENEMIGO GENEROSOMagnus Bar fod, en el an?o ????, empr endio? la
conquista gener al de los r einos de Ir landa; se dice que la vi?sper a de su muer te
r ecibio? este saludo de Muir cher tach, r ey enDublin: Que en tus eje?r citos militen
el or o y la tempestad, Magnus Bar fod. Que man?ana, en los campos de mi r eino, sea
feliz tu batalla. Que tus manos de r ey tejan ter r ibles la tela de la espada.Que
sean alimento del cisne r ojo los que se oponen a tu espada. Que te sacien de glor ia
tus muchos dioses, que te sacien de sangr e. Que seas victor ioso en la aur or a, r ey
que pisas a Ir landa.Que de tus muchos di?as ninguno br ille como el di?a de man?ana.
Por que ese di?a ser a? el u?ltimo. Te lo jur o, r ey Magnus.Por que antes que se bor r e
su luz, te vencer e? y te bor r ar e?, MagnusBar fod. Del Anhang zur Heimskr ingla (????)
de H. Ger ing ??? THE GENEROUS ENEMY In the year ????, Magnus Bar fod under took the
gener al conquest of the Ir ish kingdoms; it is said that on the eve of his death he
r eceived this gr eeting fr om Muir cher tach, the K ing of Dublin:May gold and the stor m
fight on your side, Magnus Bar fod. May your fighting meet with good for tune,
tomor r ow, on thefields of my kingdom.May your r oyal hands str ike awe, weaving the
swor d's web. May those who oppose your swor d be food for the r ed swan. May your
many gods sate you with glor y, may they sate youwith blood.May you be victor ious in
the dawn, K ing who tr ead upon Ir eland. May tomor r ow shine the br ightest of all your
many days.Because it will be your last. That I swear to you, K ing Magnus. Because
befor e its light is blotted out I will defeat you and blotyou out, Magnus Bar fod.
Fr om the Anhang zur Heimskr ingla by H. Ger ing (????)[W. S. Mer win] ??? LE REGRET
D'HERACLITE Yo, que tantos hombr es he sido, no he sido nunca Aquel en cuyo abr azo
desfalleci?a Matilde Ur bach. Gaspar Camer ar ius, en Deliciae Poetar um Bor ussiae,
vii, ?? ??? LE REGRET D'HERACLITE I, who've been so many men, have never been He in
whose embr ace Matilda Ur bach spent.Gaspar Camer ar ius, in Deliciae Poetar um
Bor ussiae, vii, ?? [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ??? Appendices NotesContents of the
Pr incipal Editions of Bor ges' Poetr y Index of Spanish and English Titles APPENDICES
I: New and Unr epr inted Poems Over the year s and thr ough successive editions of his
collected poems, Bor ges has pr uned many pieces. Recently he has even said--par tly
in tr uth, par tly in exagger ation--that one r eason he kept on wr iting poetr y and
adding it to new editions of his Obr a poe?tica was to have a pr etext for leaving
out cer tain poems he disliked. Fr om the fir st collected edition, of ????, to the
latest, of ????, near ly thir ty poems have been suppr essed. But these r ejections ar e
not only of wor k the author no longer feels any sympathy for ; occasionally Bor ges
will r ewr ite a poem and then, in a kind of substitution, dr op the ear lier ver sion.
To illustr ate what this unr epr inted mater ial is like, five r ejected pieces ar e
included her e. "Blur r ed Dawn" and "Along the Byways of Ni^mes" wer e never collected
again after their appear ances, r es- pectively, in fir st editions of Fer vor de
Buenos Air es and Luna de enfr ente. The two poems on Colonel Fr ancisco Bor ges and
the one on Rafael Cansinos-Assens fall into the categor y of substitutions; "Car ved
on a Tombstone" was r eplaced in ???? by "To Colonel Fr ancisco Bor ges", which itself
was dr opped in ???? after the author had taken up and per fected the same theme in
"Allusion to the Death of Colonel Fr ancisco Bor ges". These last thr ee and the
sonnet "Juni?n" should be compar ed. The poem to Cansinos, also left out of the ????
edition, should be r ead with the mor e r ecent sonnet on him."The Southside" and
"Rose", wr itten in July or August ????, and quietly slipped into
the latest r evised edition of Fer vor de Buenos Air es, ar e given a place her e,
since they have little in common either in tone or point of view with the ear ly
Bor ges. The Spanish texts follow the tr anslations and in each case wer e taken
fr om the last pr inted ver sion. In the second and fifth poems, slight modifications
in accenting and typogr aphy have been made with the author 's consent so as to
confor m both to his own styling and to the styling of this book; in the title of
the four th poem, the for m of Cansinos' name has been cor r ected. For fur ther details
on the ??? or igins and histor ies of these and other unr epr inted poems, see
pp. ???-??. BLURRED DAWNThe ships have gone blankin the r ectangular water s of the
dock basin. The cr anes, at inter vals, r elax their tendons. The masts ar e blunted in
the shallow sky. A choked sir en vainly plucksthe str ings of far -off spaces.The ash
of scatter ed good-byesmakes the whole place desolate,and the passing gullis a
handker chief that bids far ewell,its wingtips gr azingthe axes of the pr ows that fell
the for est ofthe seas.For eseen, mir aculous,the headlong dawnwill r oll in fr om soul
to soul.[Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] CARVED ON A TOMBSTONEFor Colonel Fr ancisco
Bor ges, my gr andfather The easy hills of Ur uguay, Par aguay's bur ning swamps and the
vanquished pr air ies to your mind wer ea single unending violence. In the fighting at
La Ver de death made inr oads on so much br aver y. ??? If for you this life tur ned out
like steel and your hear t an angr y mobthat thr onged your br east,may divine justice
enlist for you now all happinessand may all immor tality be with you. [Nor man Thomas
di Giovanni] TO COLONEL FRANCISCO BORGES (????-????)For your life was this:an
object dr agged fr om battle to battle.Honor , poignancy, loneliness and cour age that
ser ved no end.Montevideo and those killer s in the pay of Or ibe, Ur uguay's hogback
r idges,the fever -r idden swamps of Par aguay,two Par aguayan bullets,Jor da?n's mounted
bands r oaming the hill countr y, the plains of Catr iel and of Mar ti?n Fier r o.On
the ??th of November ????,so that death might take you in its eye, you wr apped
your self in a white poncho and r ode out on a silver -color ed hor se.On the ??th of
November ????you lay dying with two bullets in the stomach. [Nor man Thomas di
Giovanni] ??? TO RAFAEL CANSINOS-ASSENS Long and final passage over the
br eathtaking height of the tr estle's span.At our feet the wind gr opes for sailsand
the star s thr ob intensity.We r elish the taste of the night, tr ansfixed bydar kness--
night become now again a habit ofour flesh.The final night of our talkingbefor e the
sea-miles par t us.Still our s is the silencewher e like meadows the voices glitter .
Dawn is still a bir d lostin the most distant vileness of the wor ld.This last night
of all, shelter edfr om the gr eat wind of absence.The inwar dness of Good-bye is
tr agiclike that of ever y event in which Time is manifest. It is bitter to r ealize
that we shall not even have the star s in common.When evening is quietness in my
patio,fr om your pages mor ning will r ise.Your winter will be the shadow of my summer
and your light the glor y of my shadow.Still we per sist together .Still our two
voices achieve under standinglike the intensity and tender ness of sundown. [Rober t
Fitzger ald] ALONG THE BYWAYS OF NIMESLike those r oads back home which stand out in
my memor y, this tr ee-lined way in Pr ovence ??? dr aws its simple Roman str aightness
thr ough Ni^mes' br oad subur bsfull of space and a gener osity of plain. The water
intones in a ditchthe sor r ow that suits its r estless jour ney,and its mur mur ing is a
fir st awakening,and night comes on kindly as a tr ee,and the loneliness ur ges me
along on my walk. This place is much like happiness,yet I myself am not happy.The
sky is living out a full moon,and fr om a door way a music r eaches methat dies in
loveand with pained r elief comes back.My own dar k wor r ies mor tify the calm.I am
deeply wr oughtby the shame of being sad among so much beauty and the disgr ace of
unfulfilled hopes. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] THE SOUTHSIDEFr om one of your patios
to have looked upat the ancient star s,fr om a bench in deep shadow to have looked up
at those scatter ed points of light,which my ignor ance never lear ned to name or to
or der into constellations,to have been awar e of the cir cle of water in the hidden
cister n,of the odor of jasmine and honeysuckle, the silence of the bir d asleep,the
ar ch of the entr anceway, the damp-- these things, per haps, ar e the poem. [Nor man
Thomas di Giovanni] ??? ROSE Rose,the unfading r ose beyond my ver se-- r ose that's
full and fr agr ant, r ose of the black gar den in the deep of night, r ose of any
gar den and any night,r ose that's bor n again by the ar t of alchemy out of tenuous
ash,r ose of the Per sians and Ar iosto,r ose that's always by itself,r ose that's
always the r ose of r oses,the young Platonic flower , the blind and bur ning r ose
beyond my ver se, unattainable r ose. [Nor man Thomas di Giovanni] ALBA DESDIBUJADASe
apagar on los bar cosen el agua cuadr ada de la da?r sena.Las per io?dicas gr u?as
r elajan sus tendones. Los ma?stiles se embotan en el cielo playo. Una sir ena
ahogada pulsa en vanolas cuer das de la distancia.La ceniza de adioses aventadosva
agostando el par ajey es un pan?uelo en despedidala gaviota que pasar ozando con las
alaslas hachas de las pr oas que talan la for estade los mar es.En pr evisto milagr ola
aur or a despen?ada r odar a? de alma en alma.??? INSCRIPCION SEPULCRAL Par a el
cor onel Fr ancisco Bor ges, mi abueloLas car in?osas lomas or ientales, los ar dientes
ester os par aguayos y la pampa r endidafuer on ante tu almauna sola violencia
continuada.En el combate de La Ver de desbar ato? tanto valor la muer te.Si esta vida
contigo fue acer aday el cor azo?n, air ada muchedumbr e se te agolpo? en el pecho,
r uego al justo destinoaliste par a ti? toda la dichay que toda la inmor talidad sea
contigo. AL CORONEL FRANCISCO BORGES (????-????) Por que eso fue tu vida:Una cosa
que ar r astr an las batallas.El honor , la tr isteza, la soledad y el inu?til cor aje.
Montevideo y los mazor quer os de Or ibe, las r esueltas cuchillas or ientales,los
febr iles ester os del Par aguay,dos balas par aguayas,la montoner a jor danista en los
montes, la pampa de Catr iel y de Mar ti?n Fier r o.??? El di?a ?? de noviembr e
de ????, par a que te vier a la muer te, montabas un caballo plateadoy te envolviste
en un poncho blanco.El di?a ?? de noviembr e de ????, mor i?as con dos balas en el
esto?mago.A RAFAEL CANSINOS-ASSENSLar ga y final andanza sobr e la ar r ebatada
exaltacio?n del ala del viaducto.El viento, a nuestr os pies, busca vela?menes,y las
estr ellas laten intensidad.Bien paladeado el gusto de la noche, tr aspasadosde
sombr a, vuelta ya una costumbr e de nuestr acar ne la noche.Noche postr er de nuestr o
dia?logo,antes de que nos separ en las leguas.Aun es nuestr o el silenciodonde como
pr ader as r esplandecen las voces.Aun el alba es un pa?jar o per didoen la vileza ma?s
r emota del mundo.Ultima noche r esguar dadadel gr an viento de ausencia.Es tr a?gica la
entr an?a del adio?scomo de todo acontecer en que es notor io el Tiempo. Es dur o
r ealizar que ni tendr emosen comu?n las estr ellas.Cuando la tar de sea quietud en mi
patio,de tus car illas sur gir a? la man?ana.Ser a? la sombr a de mi ver ano tu invier noy
tu luz ser a? glor ia de mi sombr a.Aun per sistimos juntos.Aun las dos voces logr an
convivir ,como la intensidad y la ter nur a en las puestas de sol.??? POR LOS VIALES
DE NIMES Como esas calles patr iascuya fir meza en mi r ecor dacio?n es r eclamoesta
alameda pr ovenzaltiende su fa?cil r ectitud latinapor un ancho subur biodonde hay
despejo y gener osidad de llanur a.El agua va r ezando por una acequiael dolor que
conviene a su per egr inacio?n insentida y la susur r acio?n es ensayo de almay la
noche es benigna como un a?r boly la soledad per suade a la andanza.Este lugar es
semejante a la dicha;y yo no soy feliz.El cielo esta? viviendo un plenilunioy un
por talejo me declar a una mu?sicaque en el amor se muer ey con alivio dolor ido
r esur ge.Mi oscur idad difi?cil mor tifica la calma.Tenaces me suscitanla afr enta de
estar tr iste en la her mosur ay el deshonor de insatisfecha esper anza. EL SURDesde
uno de tus patios haber mir adolas antiguas estr ellas,desde el banco de la sombr a
haber mir ado esas luces disper sasque mi ignor ancia no ha apr endido a nombr ar ni a
or denar en constelaciones,haber sentido el ci?r culo del aguaen el secr eto aljibe,el
olor del jazmi?n y la madr eselva, ??? el silencio del pa?jar o dor mido,el ar co del
zagua?n, la humedad --esas cosas, acaso, son el poema. LA ROSALa r osa,la
inmar cesible r osa que no canto,la que es peso y fr agancia,la del negr o jar di?n en
la alta noche,la de cualquier jar di?n y cualquier tar de, la r osa que r esur ge de la
tenueceniza por el ar te de la alquimia,la r osa de los per sas y de Ar iosto,la que
siempr e esta? sola,la que siempr e es la r osa de las r osas,la joven flor plato?nica,
la ar diente y ciega r osa que no canto, la r osa inalcanzable. ??? II: Pr ose Pieces
fr om El hacedor One of the celebr ated aspects of Bor ges' style has been his
fr equent blur r ing or abolishment of the boundar ies between the shor t stor y and
essay for ms. "The Appr oach to al-Mu'tasim" is r ead as a r eview in one of his books
and as a stor y in another , and among the miniatur e essays of The Book of Imaginar y
Beings ar e a number of wholly made- up pieces. Similar ly, Bor ges dr aws no gr eat
distinction between his poems and a number of his shor t pr ose pieces, often
disclaiming any essential differ ence between poetr y and pr ose at all and saying he
wr ites the one or the other mer ely to suit pr ivate needs or moods. "The Dagger ",
pr inted in this volume as a poem, appear s with only minor typogr aphical
modifications as Chapter ? in his book on Evar isto Car r iego.
Twice--in El hacedor (The Maker ) and in Elogio de la sombr a (In Pr aise of
Dar kness)--Bor ges has collected poems and shor t pr ose wor ks together . In this
light, five pieces fr om El hacedor have been chosen for inclusion her e. These poems
in pr ose wer e all wr itten in the late ????'s. The or iginal texts ar e pr inted
following the English ver sions. THE MAK ERUntil then, he had never dwelled on the
pleasur es of memor y. Impr essions had always washed over him, fleeting and vivid. A
potter 's design in ver milion; the vault of heaven cluster ed with star s that wer e
also gods; the moon, fr om which a lion had fallen; the smoothness of mar ble under
one's linger ing finger tips; the taste of boar meat, which he liked to str ip with
quick flashing bites; a Phoenician wor d; the black shadow cast by a spear on yellow
sand; the near ness of the sea or of women; the heavy wine whose r ough- ness he cut
with honey--any of these could wholly encompass the r ange of his mind. He was
acquainted with fear as well as with anger and cour age, and once he was the fir st
to scale an enemy wall. Eager , cur ious, unquestioning, following no other law than
to enjoy things ??? and for get them, he wander ed over many lands and, on one side
or the other of the sea, looked on the cities of men and their palaces. In bustling
mar ketplaces or at the foot of a mountain whose hidden peak may have shelter ed
satyr s, he had hear d entangled stor ies, which he accepted as he accepted r eality,
without attempting to find out whether they wer e tr ue or imaginar y.Little by
little, the beautiful wor ld began to leave him; a per sistent mist er ased the lines
of his hand, the night lost its multitude of star s, the gr ound became uncer tain
beneath his steps. Ever ything gr ew distant and blur r ed. When he knew he was going
blind, he cr ied out; stoic for titude had not yet been invented, and Hector could
flee fr om Achilles without dishonor . I shall no longer look upon the sky and its
mythological dr ead (he felt), nor this face which the year s will tr ans- for m. Days
and nights passed over these fear s of his body, but one mor ning he awoke, looked
(without astonishment now) at the dim things ar ound him, and unexplainably felt--
the way one r ecognizes a str ain of music or a voice--that all this had alr eady
happened to himand that he had faced it with fear , but also with joy, hope, and
cur iosity. Then he went deep into his past, which seemed to him bottomless, and
managed to dr aw out of that dizzying descent the lost memor y that now shone like a
coin under the r ain, maybe because he had never r ecalled it befor e except in some
dr eam.This was the memor y. Another boy had wr onged him and he had gone to his
father and told him the stor y. His father , letting him speak, appear ed not to
listen or under stand, and took down fr om the wall a br onze dagger , beautiful and
char ged with power , which in secr et the boy had coveted. Now it lay in his hands
and the suddenness of possession wiped out the injur y he had suffer ed, but his
father 's voice was telling him, "Let them know you'r e a man," and in that voice was
a command. Night blinded the paths. Clasping the dagger , in which he felt a magic
power , he scr ambled down the steep hillside that sur r ounded the house and r an to
the edge of the sea, thinking of himself as Ajax and Per seus and peopling with
wounds and battles the dar k salt air . The exact taste of that moment was what he
now sought. The r est matter ed little to him--the insults leading to the challenge,
the clumsy fight, the way home with the blade dr ippingblood. ??? Another memor y,
also involving night and an expectation of adventur e, spr ang out of that one. A
woman, the fir st to be given him by the gods, had waited for him in the shadow of a
cr ypt until he r eached her thr ough galler ies that wer e like nets of stone and down
slopes that sank into dar kness. Why did these memor ies come back to him and why
without bitter ness, as if for etelling of things about to happen? With slow
amazement he under stood. In this nighttime of his mor tal eyes into which he was now
descending, love and danger wer e also in wait for him--Ar es and Aphr odite--because
he alr eady divined (because he was alr eady r inged in by) a r umor of hexameter s and
glor y, a r umor of men defending a shr ine which the gods would not save and of black
ships r oaming the seas in sear ch of a loved island, the r umor of the Odysseys and
the Iliads it was his destiny to sing and to leave r esounding for ever in mankind's
hollow memor y. These things we know, but not what he felt when he went down into
his final dar kness. A YELLOW ROSEIt happened neither on that after noon nor on the
next, but when the r enowned Giambattista Mar ino died--the man whom the many mouths
of Fame (to use an image that was dear to him) pr oclaimed the new Homer and the new
Dante--the silent inner event that had occur r ed was, essentially, the last of his
life. Bur dened with year s and glor y, the man lay dying in a br oad Spanish bed with
tall car ved cor ner posts. It is easy to pictur e a quiet balcony a few steps away,
looking towar d the sunset, and far ther below mar ble statuar y and laur el tr ees and a
gar den whose ter r aces ar e r eflected in a r ectangle of water . A woman has placed a
yellow r ose in a vase; the man mur - mur s the inevitable ver ses of which he himself,
to speak tr uthfully, is r ather wear y: Deep pur ple of the gar den, pr ide of the
lawn, Spr ingtime's jewel, fair Apr il's eye . . . Then the r evelation came to him.
Mar ino saw the r ose as Adam??? fir st saw it in Par adise, and he felt that it lived
in an eter nity of its own and not in his wor ds, and that we may mention or allude
to a thing but not expr ess it, and that the tall pr oud volumes casting a golden
haze ther e in a cor ner of the r oom wer e not (as his vanity dr eamed) a mir r or of the
wor ld but only one thing mor e added to the wor ld.This illumination came to Mar ino
on the eve of his death, as per haps befor e him it had come to Homer and to Dante as
well. THE WITNESSIn a stable near ly in the shadow of the new stone chur ch, a gr ay-
eyed, gr ay-bear ded cowher d lies amid the stench of cattle and quietly seeks death
the way a man seeks sleep. Obedient to vast secr et laws, the lights and shadows of
the day play on the r ough walls of the hovel. Close by ar e tilled fields and a dr y
ditch clogged with dead leaves, and in the black soil at the edge of the woods the
tr acks of a wolf. The man sleeps and dr eams, for gotten. The bells for evening
pr ayer awaken him. By now the sound of bells is one of evening's customs in the
kingdoms of England, but as a child the man had known the face of Woden, the holy
awe and loud exultation of his wor ship, the clumsy wooden idol laden with Roman
coins and coar se vestments, and the sacr ifice of hor ses, dogs, and pr isoner s.
Befor e daybr eak he will die, and with him will die--never to come back again--the
last actual images of heathen r ites. When this Saxon is gone, the wor ld will be a
little poor er . Events that fill up space and r each their end when someone dies may
cause us wonder , but some thing--or an endless number of things--dies with each
man's last br eath, unless, as theosophy con-jectur es, the wor ld has a memor y. In
the past, ther e was a day when the last eyes to have seen Chr ist wer e closed; the
battle of Juni?n and Helen's face each died with the death of some one man. What
will die with me when I die, what pathetic or wor thless memor y will be lost to the
wor ld? The voice of Macedonio Fer na?ndez, the image of a br own hor se gr azing in an
empty lot at the comer of Ser r ano and Char cas, a stick of sulphur in the dr awer of
a mahogany desk? ??? EVERYTHING AND NOTHING In him ther e was no one. Behind his
face (even in the poor paintings of the per iod it is unlike any other ) and his
wor ds (which wer e swar ming, fanciful, and excited), ther e was only a touch of
coldness, a dr eam undr eamed by anyone. At fir st he thought all people wer e like
him, but when he had tr ied to explain this inner emptiness, a schoolmate's blank
look showed him his mistake and made him r ealize fr om then on that an individual
had best not differ fr om his species. Fr om time to time he thought books might cur e
this str ange ailment, and in this way he lear ned the small Latin and less Gr eek of
which a contempor ar y was to r emar k. Later on he consider ed that in the pr actice of
one of humanity's age-old habits he might actually find what he was looking for ,
and dur ing the cour se of a long, lazy June after noon he let himself be initiated by
Anne Hathaway. In his twenties he went to London. By instinct, so as to cover up
the fact that he was nobody, he had gr own skilled in the tr ick of making believe he
was somebody. Ther e in London he came to the pr o- fession to which he was
destined--that of the actor , who on a stageplays at being someone else befor e an
audience who plays at taking him for that other per son. Stagecr aft br ought him
singular happiness, per haps the fir st he ever knew, but once the last line was
spoken and the last cor pse car ted off, a hateful taste of the unr eal came down on
him. He was no longer Fer r ex or Tambur laine and went back to being nobody. So
dr iven, he began to imagine other her oes and other tr agic tales. And while in
London bawdyhouses and taver ns his flesh fulfilled its destiny as flesh, the spir it
that inhabited him was Caesar , ignor ing the augur 's pr ophecy, and Juliet, hating
the lar k, and Mac- beth, speaking on the heath to the witches, who ar e also the
Fates. No one was ever so many men as this man, who, like the Egyptian Pr oteus,
could r un thr ough all of life's guises. Occasionally, he left a confession in some
nook of his wor k, sur e it would never be deci- pher ed; Richar d II says that in one
per son he plays many people, and with str ange wor ds Iago says, "I am not what I
am." The under - lying sameness of existing, dr eaming, and acting inspir ed him to
famous pages. For twenty year s he per sisted
in this wilful hallucination, but one ??? day he was over come by the sur feit and
the hor r or of being so many kings who die by the swor d and so many star -cr ossed
lover s who meet and who par t and who at last so melodiously die. That same day he
decided to sell his theater . Befor e a week was over , he had gone back to the
village of his bir th, wher e again he discover ed the tr ees and the r iver of his
childhood, never linking them to those other tr ees and r iver s--made illustr ious by
mythological allusions and Latin wor ds --which his muse had celebr ated. He had to
be someone; he became a r etir ed stage manager who has made his for tune and to whom
loans, lawsuits, and petty usur y ar e amusements. In this per sonage, he dictated the
dr y testament that has come down to us, in which he deliber ately avoided any tr ace
of the pathetic or the liter ar y. Fr iends fr om London used to visit him in his
countr y r etr eat, and for their sake he again took up the par t of poet.The tale r uns
that befor e or after death, when he stood face to face with God, he said to Him,
"I, who in vain have been so many men, want to be one man--myself." The voice of
the Lor d answer ed him out of the whir lwind, "I too have no self; I dr eamed the
wor ld as you dr eamed your wor k, my Shakespear e, and among the shapes of my dr eam
ar e you, who, like me, ar e many men and no one." BORGES AND MYSELFIt's to the other
man, to Bor ges, that things happen. I walk along the str eets of Buenos Air es,
stopping now and then--per haps out of habit--to look at the ar ch of an old entr ance
way or a gr illwor k gate; of Bor ges I get news thr ough the mail and glimpse his name
among a committee of pr ofessor s or in a dictionar y of biogr aphy. I have a taste for
hour glasses, maps, eighteenth-centur y typogr aphy, the r oots of wor ds, the smell of
coffee, and Stevenson's pr ose; the other man shar es these likes, but in a showy way
that tur ns them into stagy manner isms. It would be an exagger ation to say that we
ar e on bad ter ms; I live, I let myself live, so that Bor ges can weave his tales and
poems, and those tales and poems ar e my justification. It is not har d for me to
admit that he has managed to wr ite a few wor thwhile pages, but these pages cannot
save me, per haps because what is good ??? no longer belongs to anyone--not even
the other man--but r ather to speech or tr adition. In any case, I am fated to become
lost once and for all, and only some moment of myself will sur vive in the other
man. Little by little, I have been sur r ender ing ever ything to him, even though I
have evidence of his stubbor n habit of falsification and exagger ating. Spinoza held
that all things tr y to keep on being them- selves; a stone wants to be a stone and
the tiger a tiger . I shall r emain in Bor ges, not in myself (if it is so that I am
someone), but I r ecognize myself less in his books than in those of other s or than
in the labor ious tuning of a guitar . Year s ago, I tr ied r idding myself of him, and
I went fr om myths of the outlying slums of the city to games with time and
infinity, but those games ar e now par t of Bor ges, and I will have to tur n to other
things. And so, my life is a r unning away, and I lose ever ything and ever ything is
left to oblivion or to the other man.Which of us is wr iting this page I don't know.
[Tr anslations by Nor man Thomas di Giovanni in collabor ation with the author ] EL
HACEDORNunca se habi?a demor ado en los goces de la memor ia. Las impr esio- nes
r esbalaban sobr e e?l, momenta?neas y vividas; el ber mello?n de un alfar er o, la bo?
veda car gada de estr ellas que tambie?n er an dioses, la luna, de la que habi?a cai?
do un leo?n, la lisur a del ma?r mol bajo las lentas yemas sensibles, el sabor de la
car ne de jabali?, que le gustaba desgar r ar con dentelladas blancas y br uscas, una
palabr a fenicia, la sombr a negr a que una lanza pr oyecta en la ar ena amar illa, la
cer - cani?a del mar o de las mujer es, el pesado vino cuya asper eza mitigaba la
miel, podi?an abar car por enter o el a?mbito de su alma. Conoci?a el ter r or per o
tambie?n la co?ler a y el cor aje, y una vez fue el pr imer o en escalar un mur o
enemigo. Avido, cur ioso, casual, sin otr a ley que la fr uicio?n y la indifer encia
inmediata, anduvo por la var iada tier r a y mir o?, en una u otr a mar gen del mar , las
ciudades de los hombr es y sus palacios. En los mer cados populosos o al pie de una
montan?a de ??? cumbr e incier ta, en la que bien podi?a haber sa?tir os, habi?a
escuchado complicadas histor ias, que r ecibio? como r ecibi?a la r ealidad, sin
indagar si er an ver dader as o falsas.Gr adualmente, el her moso univer so fue abandona?
ndolo; una ter ca neblina le bor r o? las li?neas de la mano, la noche se despoblo? de
estr ellas, la tier r a er a insegur a bajo sus pies. Todo se alejaba y se confundi?a.
Cuando supo que se estaba quedando ciego, gr ito?; el pudor estoico no habi?a sido
au?n inventado y He?ctor podi?a huir sin desmedr o. Ya no ver e? (sintio?) ni el
cielo lleno de pavor mitolo?gico; ni esta car a que los an?os tr ansfor mar a?n. Di?as
y noches pasar on sobr e esa desesper acio?n de su car ne, per o una man?ana se
desper to?, mir o? (ya sin asombr o) las bor r osas cosas que lo r odeaban e
inexplicablemente sintio?, como quien r econoce una mu?sica o una voz, que ya le
habi?a ocur r ido todo eso y que lo habi?a encar ado con temor , per o tambie?n con ju?
bilo, esper anza y cur iosidad. Entonces descendio? a su memor ia, que le par ecio?
inter minable, y logr o? sacar de aquel ve?r tigo el r ecuer do per dido que r elucio?
como una moneda bajo la lluvia, acaso por que nunca lo habi?a mir ado, salvo, quiza?,
en un suen?o.El r ecuer do er a asi?. Lo habi?a injur iado otr o muchacho y e?l habi?a
acudido a su padr e y le habi?a contado la histor ia. Este lo dejo? hablar como si no
escuchar a o no compr endier a y descolgo? de la par ed un pun?al de br once, bello y
car gado de poder , que el chico habi?a codi- ciado fur tivamente. Ahor a lo teni?a en
las manos y la sor pr esa de la posesio?n anulo? la injur ia padecida, per o la voz del
padr e estaba diciendo: Que alguien sepa que er es un hombr e, y habi?a una or den en
la voz. La noche cegaba los caminos; abr azado al pun?al, en el que pr esenti?a una
fuer za ma?gica, descendio? la br usca lader a que r odeaba la casa y cor r io? a la
or illa del mar , son?a?ndose Ayax y Per seo y poblando de her idas y de batallas la
oscur idad salobr e. El sabor pr eciso de aquel momento er a lo que ahor a buscaba; no
le impor taba lo dema?s: las afr entas del desafi?o, el tor pe combate, el r egr eso con
la hoja sangr ienta. Otr o r ecuer do, en el que tambie?n habi?a una noche y una in-
minencia de aventur a, br oto? de aque?l. Una mujer , la pr imer a que le depar ar on los
dioses, lo habi?a esper ado en la sombr a de un hipogeo, y e?l la busco? por galer i?
as que er an como r edes de piedr a y por declives que se hundi?an en la sombr a. ?Por
que? le llegaban esas memor ias y ??? por que? le llegaban sin amar gur a, como una
mer a pr efigur acio?n del pr esente?Con gr ave asombr o compr endio?. En esta noche de
sus ojos mor - tales, a la que ahor a descendi?a, lo aguar daban tambie?n el amor y el
r iesgo. Ar es y Afr odita, por que ya adivinaba (por que ya lo cer caba) un r umor de
glor ia y de hexa?metr os, un r umor de hombr es que defienden un templo que los dioses
no salvar a?n y de bajeles negr os que buscan por el mar una isla quer ida, el r umor
de las Odiseas e Ili?adas que er a su destino cantar y dejar r esonando co?ncavamente
en la memor ia humana. Sabemos estas cosas, per o no las que sintio? al descender a
la u?ltima sombr a. UNA ROSA AMARILLANi aquella tar de ni la otr a mur io? el ilustr e
Giambattista Mar ino, que las bocas una?nimes de la Fama (par a usar una imagen que
le fue car a) pr oclamar on el nuevo Homer o y el nuevo Dante, per o el hecho inmo?vil y
silencioso que entonces ocur r io? fue en ver dad el u?ltimo de su vida. Colmado de
an?os y de glor ia, el hombr e se mor i?a en un vasto lecho espan?ol de columnas
labr adas. Nada cuesta imaginar a unos pasos un ser eno balco?n que mir a al poniente
y, ma?s abajo, ma?r - moles y laur eles y un jar di?n que duplica sus gr ader i?as en un
agua r ectangular . Una mujer ha puesto en una copa una r osa amar illa; el hombr e
mur mur a los ver sos inevitables que a e?l mismo, par a hablar con sincer idad, ya lo
hasti?an un poco:Pu?r pur a del jar di?n, pompa del pr ado, gema de pr imaver a, ojo de
abr il. . .Entonces ocur r io? la r evelacio?n. Mar ino vio la r osa, como Ada?n pudo
ver la en el Par ai?so, y sintio? que ella estaba en su eter nidad y no en sus
palabr as y que podemos mencionar o aludir per o no expr esar y que los altos y
sober bios volu?menes que for maban en un a?ngulo de la sala una penumbr a de or o no
er an (como su vanidad son?o?) un espejo del mundo, sino una cosa ma?s agr egada al
mundo.Esta iluminacio?n alcanzo? Mar ino en la vi?sper a de su muer te, y Homer o y
Dante acaso la alcanzar on tambie?n. ??? EL TESTIGO En un establo que esta? casi a
la sombr a de la nueva iglesia de piedr a, un hombr e de ojos gr ises y bar ba gr is,
tendido entr e el olor de los animales, humildemente busca la muer te como quien
busca el suen?o. El di?a, fiel a vastas leyes secr etas, va desplazando y
confundiendo las sombr as en el pobr e r ecinto; afuer a esta?n las tier r as ar adas y un
zanjo?n cegado por hojas muer tas y algu?n r astr o de lobo en el bar r o negr o donde
empiezan los bosques. El hombr e duer me y suen?a, olvidado. El toque de or acio?n lo
despier ta. En los r einos de Inglater r a el son de campanas ya es uno de los ha?bitos
de la tar de, per o el hombr e, de nin?o, ha visto la car a de Woden, el hor r or divino
y la exultacio?n, el tor pe i?dolo de mader a r ecar gado de monedas r omanas y de
vestidur as pesadas, el sacr ificio de caballos, per r os y pr isioner os. Antes del alba
mor ir a? y con e?l mor ir a?n, y no volver a?n, las u?ltimas ima?genes inmediatas de
los r itos paganos; el mundo ser a? un poco ma?s pobr e cuando este sajo?n haya
muer to.Hechos que pueblan el espacio y que tocan a su fin cuando alguien se muer e
pueden mar avillar nos, per o una cosa,
o un nu?mer o infinito de cosas, muer e en cada agoni?a, salvo que exista una
memor ia del univer so, como han conjetur ado los teo?sofos. En el tiempo hubo un di?a
que apago? los u?ltimos ojos que vier on a Cr isto; la batalla deJuni?n y el amor de
Helena mur ier on con la muer te de un hombr e. ?Que? mor ir a? conmigo cuando yo muer a,
que? for ma pate?tica o deleznable per der a? el mundo? ?La voz de Macedonio Fer na?
ndez, la imagen de un caballo color ado en el baldi?o de Ser r ano y de Char cas, una
bar r a de azufr e en el cajo?n de un escr itor io de caoba?EVERYTHING AND NOTHINGNadie
hubo en e?l; detr a?s de su r ostr o (que aun a tr ave?s de las malas pintur as de la e?
poca no se par ece a ningu?n otr o) y de sus palabr as, que er an copiosas, fanta?
sticas y agitadas, no habi?a ma?s que un poco de fr i?o, un suen?o no son?ado por
alguien. Al pr incipio cr eyo? que todas las per sonas er an como e?l, per o la extr an?
eza de un compan?er o con el que habi?a empezado a comentar esa vacuidad le r evelo?
su er r or y le dejo? sentir , par a siempr e, que un individuo no debe difer ir de la
??? especie. Alguna vez penso? que en los libr os hallar i?a r emedio par a su mal y
asi? apr endio? el poco lati?n y menos gr iego de que hablar i?a un contempor a?neo;
despue?s consider o? que en el ejer cicio de un r ito elemental de la humanidad, bien
podi?a estar lo que buscaba y se dejo? iniciar por Anne Hathaway, dur ante una lar ga
siesta de junio. A los veintitantos an?os fue a Londr es. Instintivamente, ya se
habi?a adiestr ado en el ha?bito de simular que er a alguien, par a que no se
descubr ier a su condicio?n de nadie; en Londr es encontr o? la pr ofesio?n a la que
estaba pr edestinado, la del actor , que en un escenar io, juega a ser otr o, ante un
concur so de per sonas que juegan a tomar lo por aquel otr o. Las tar eas histr io?nicas
le ensen?ar on una felicidad singular , acaso la pr imer a que conocio?; per o aclamado
el u?ltimo ver so y r etir ado de la escena el u?ltimo muer to, el odiado sabor de la
ir r eali- dad r ecai?a sobr e e?l. Dejaba de ser Fer r ex o Tamer la?n y volvi?a a ser
nadie. Acosado, dio en imaginar otr os he?r oes y otr as fa?bulas tr a?gicas. Asi?,
mientr as el cuer po cumpli?a su destino de cuer po, en lupanar es y taber nas de
Londr es, el alma que lo habitaba er a Ce?sar , que desoye la admonicio?n del augur , y
Julieta, que abor r ece a la alondr a, y Macbeth, que conver sa en el pa?r amo con las
br ujas que tambie?n son las par cas. Nadie fue tantos hombr es como aquel hombr e, que
a semejanza del egipcio Pr oteo pudo agotar todas las apar iencias del ser . A veces,
dejo? en algu?n r ecodo de la obr a una confesio?n, segur o de que no la descifr ar i?
an; Ricar do afir ma que en su sola per sona, hace el papel de muchos, y Yago dice con
cur iosas palabr as no soy lo que soy. La identidad fundamental de existir , son?ar y
r epr esentar le inspir o? pasajes famosos. Veinte an?os per sistio? en esa alucinacio?
n dir igida, per o una man?ana lo sobr ecogier on el hasti?o y el hor r or de ser tantos
r eyes que muer en por la espada y tantos desdichados amantes que con- ver gen,
diver gen y melodiosamente agonizan. Aquel mismo di?a r esolvio? la venta de su
teatr o. Antes de una semana habi?a r egr esado al pueblo natal, donde r ecuper o? los
a?r boles y el r i?o de la nin?ez y no los vinculo? a aquellos otr os que habi?a
celebr ado su musa, ilustr es de alusio?n mitolo?gica y de voces latinas. Teni?a que
ser alguien; fue un empr esar io r etir ado que ha hecho for tuna y a quien le inter esan
los pr e?stamos, los litigios y la pequen?a usur a. En ese car a?cter dicto? el a?r ido
testamento que conocemos, del que deliber adamente excluyo? ??? todo r asgo pate?tico
o liter ar io. Soli?an visitar su r etir o amigos de Londr es, y e?l r etomaba par a ellos
el papel de poeta.La histor ia agr ega que, antes o despue?s de mor ir , se supo fr ente
a Dios y le dijo: Yo, que tantos hombr es he sido en vano, quier o ser uno y yo. La
voz de Dios le contesto? desde un tor bellino: Yo tampoco soy; yo son?e? el mundo
como tu? son?aste tu obr a, mi Shakespear e, y entr e las for mas de mi suen?o esta?s
tu?, que como yo er es muchos y nadie. BORGES Y YOAl otr o, a Bor ges, es a quien le
ocur r en las cosas. Yo camino por Buenos Air es y me demor o, acaso ya meca?nicamente,
par a mir ar el ar co de un zagua?n y la puer ta cancel; de Bor ges tengo noticias por
el cor r eo y veo su nombr e en una ter na de pr ofesor es o en un diccio- nar io biogr a?
fico. Me gustan los r elojes de ar ena, los mapas, la tipogr afi?a del siglo xviii,
las etimologi?as, el sabor del cafe? y la pr osa de Stevenson; el otr o compar te esas
pr efer encias, per o de un modo vanidoso que las convier te en atr ibutos de un actor .
Ser i?a exager ado afir mar que nuestr a r elacio?n es hostil; yo vivo, yo me dejo
vivir , par a que Bor ges pueda tr amar su liter atur a y esa liter atur a me justifica.
Nada me cuesta confesar que ha logr ado cier tas pa?ginas va?lidas, per o esas pa?
ginas no me pueden salvar , quiza? por que lo bueno ya no es de nadie, ni siquier a
del otr o, sino del lenguaje o la tr adicio?n. Por lo dema?s, yo estoy destinado a
per der me, definitivamente, y so?lo algu?n instante de mi? podr a? sobr evivir en el
otr o. Poco a poco voy cedie?n- dole todo, aunque me consta su per ver sa costumbr e de
falsear y magnificar . Spinoza entendio? que todas las cosas quier en per sever ar en
su ser ; la piedr a eter namente quier e ser piedr a y el tigr e un tigr e. Yo he de
quedar en Bor ges, no en mi? (si es que alguien soy), per o me r econozco menos en sus
libr os que en muchos otr os o que en el labor ioso r asgueo de una guitar r a. Hace an?
os yo tr ate? de libr ar me de e?l y pase? de las mitologi?as del ar r abal a los juegos
con el tiempo y con lo infinito, per o esos juegos son de Bor ges ahor a y tendr e? que
idear otr as cosas. Asi? mi vida es una fuga y todo lo pier do y todo es del olvido,
o del otr o.No se? cua?l de los dos escr ibe esta pa?gina. ??? III: Pr efaces and a
Dedication As a wr iter of for ewor ds to his own and to other people's books, Bor ges
has been pr olific. In the case of the pr efaces to his poetr y, they ar e his only
dir ect wr itten comment on that body of his wor k. In- for mal, highly per sonal,
always r eadable, they ar e often invaluable for their hints and insights.Ther e ar e
nine pr efaces to the fifteen pr incipal volumes of Bor ges' poetr y. All but one of
these ar e pr esented her e (the pr eface to Elogio de la sombr a [In Pr aise of
Dar kness] will appear in the tr anslation of that book in ????), together with two
infor mative pr efaces to wor k in the sonnet for m and to poems on nor ther n themes,
which have appear ed only in small, pr ivately pr inted editions.The for ewor ds to the
fir st two collections of poems wer e under - standably never r epr inted. They wer e
composed in a tor tuous, seventeenth-centur y kind of pr ose that we have made no
attempt to imitate in English. In fact, Bor ges, in a par ticular ly indulgent mood
when he allowed these English ver sions to be made, wanted it clear that we wer e not
r eally tr anslating the pieces but explaining them. I quote the or iginal opening
sentence of the fir st pr eface to indicate what is meant by this:Suelen ser las
pr efaciones de autor una componenda mal per gen?ada, entr e la pr imor dial jactancia
de quien ampar a obr a que es pr opiamente faccio?n suya, y la humildad que aconsejan
la mundologi?a y el uso.A r ecent dedicator y piece is also included in this section.
[Pr eface to the ???? edition of Fer vor de Buenos Air es] TO THE READERAuthor s'
pr efaces ar e usually a halfway compr omise between the ar r ogance of someone
defending his own wor k and the modesty ??? demanded by established tr adition. This
for ewor d will hold to that custom.I shall star t out by obser ving that my poems, in
spite of the mis- leading suggestion of their title, ar e not--nor did they for a
single moment ever attempt to be--a compendium of the many aspects and places of my
city. In this volume, Buenos Air es does not stand for the topogr aphical convention
implied by its name; it is my home, its familiar neighbor hoods, and, along with
them, what I exper ienced of love, of suffer ing, and of misgivings.On pur pose, then,
I have left out what I feel to be for eign to Buenos Air es: the r ush of cer tain
downtown str eets, and the sad and common mobs that ar e found in any por t--elements
which have little to do with the laziness of a South Amer ican town. Without looking
for war d to what may come, nor wistful for the past, my poetr y tr ies to r epr esent
pr esent-day Buenos Air es, the amazement and the wonder of the places my long
r ambles lead me. Akin to the Romans, who would mur mur the wor ds "numen inest" on
passing thr ough a woods, "her e dwells a god" my ver ses declar e, stating the wonder
of the str eets deified by hope or by memor y. Ever yday places become, little by
little, holy.I r ealize that such intentions will sound str ange to these times,
whose poetr y usually melts into mer e wor d-music or descends to a pack of showy
tr ifles. I speak without condemnation, but I consider myself justified. One cannot
help disliking the wr iter who piles wor ds on wor ds, unsur e of their inner mar vels,
or the wr iter who tr ies to make his wor k glitter by the mention of gold and jewels,
ther eby shaming with so much illumination our own r ather dr ab ver ses, which take
their light only fr om the modest glow of sunsets at the end of the str eet. To the
decor atively visual and shining lyr ic be- queathed us by Go?ngor a thr ough his heir
Rube?n Dar i?o, I have tr ied to set up another --thoughtful, built up of intellectual
adventur es, and whose ar ticles of faith may be summed up in the following wor ds
fr om Sir Thomas Br owne (Religio Medici, ????): Now for my life, it is a mir acle,
which to r elate, wer e not a Histor y, but a piece of Poetr y, and would sound to
common ear s like a Fable. Ther e is sur ely a piece of Divinity in us, something that
was befor e the Elements,??? and owes no homage unto the Sun. He that under stands
not thus much is yet to begin the Alphabet of man.*As to the for m--r ather than the
essence--of
my ver ses, it was my aim to patter n them after Heine's The Nor th Sea. Ther e ar e,
however , some for mal differ ences. The plainness and cer tainty of Spanish pr o-
nunciation, with its abundance of open vowels, do not per mit the language to be
made into absolutely fr ee ver se and ther efor e demand the use of assonances. The
eleven-syllable line is now so natur al to us that I have abounded in ver ses of that
measur e.About the language I have little to say. I have always tr ied to use wor ds--
I cannot say whether successfully or not--accor ding to their r oot meanings, a much
mor e difficult task than supposed by wr iter s who, without achieving new images,
fall into a lazy and car eless style. Only cer tain wor ds affor d me sensual pleasur e,
a defect found in all wr iter s I know and whose one exception was Quevedo, who
wallowed in the fullness of the Spanish tongue.I have always been fond of coining
metaphor s, but at the same time I always put effectiveness befor e mer e novelty. In
this book ther e ar e sever al pieces made by str inging out metaphor s, a method which
r eached per fection in shor t poems by Jacobo Sur eda, J. Rivas- Panedas, and Nor ah
Lange, but which of cour se is not the only one. This statement--which must seem
obvious to the r eader --will be blasphemous to many sectar ian comr ades. If in the
following pages ther e is some successful ver se or other , may the r eader for give me
the audacity of having wr itten it befor e him. We ar e all one; our inconsequential
minds ar e much alike, and cir cumstances so influence us that it is something of an
accident that you ar e the r eader and I the wr iter --the unsur e, ar dent wr iter --of my
ver ses.? J.L.B. * Par t ?, section ii. For the sake of r eadability, Bor ges' custom
of not indicating ellipses in quoted matter is followed her e. Ed.? In all
subsequent editions of Fer vor de Buenos Air es, Bor ges has r epr inted--in a br iefer ,
r evised for m--only the concluding par agr aph of this pr eface. It is tr ans- lated as
follows in its cur r ent (since ????) wor ding; in the ???? and ???? editions of the
Poemas, in the fir st line, "offer " had r ead "admit": If the pages of this book???
[Pr eface to the ???? edition of Luna de enfr ente] TO THE POSSIBLE READERThis book is
a token of my pover ty, wr itten not in passion but in meditation. In these pages the
r eader will find a long, wear y str eet out in the wester n str etches of town, sad in
the sunset, and the lone- liness of love denied. Our daily lives ar e a dialogue
between life and death, woven of memor ies (shapes of having been and being no
longer ) or else of plans: mer e hope of being. A gr eat deal of non-life is in us,
and chess, gather ings, lectur es, small tasks ar e at times but appear ances of life,
ways of being dead. Let ever y poet pr aise the things that ar e akin to himself, for
that is r eally poetr y. I have cele- br ated those things akin to me, those things I
deeply feel. They ar e the blue walls of the city's outlying slums and the tiny
squar es br im- ming with sky. This is all I have; her e I offer it to you. I am in
no mood for the discussion of technique. The music of ver se har dly inter ests me, so
that I find all of its for ms suitable as long as r hyme is unobtr usive. Many of the
pieces in this book attempt our Ar gentine speech, not in jar gon of the plains or of
the city's tene- ments but in the diver se, ever yday talk of Buenos Air es. Other s
attempt that timeless, abstr act Spanish (neither fr om Castile nor fr om South
Amer ica) which is found in any dictionar y. In two of them figur e the name of
Evar isto Car r iego, always as something of a minor deity of Paler mo, for that is how
I feel him. But another far mor e over whelming shadow than his is cast over the
neighbor hood--that of Juan Manuel de Rosas. I want to explain the title, if need
be. Moon Acr oss the Way. The moon (the moon that walks in br ightness, I r ecently
r ead in Fr ay Luis de Leo?n) is in itself a symbol of poetr y. The acr oss the way
does not change this but makes it into a city moon, br ings it near er , tur ning it
into a Buenos Air es moon, ever yone's moon. This is the way I like it, and this is
the way I see it fr om the str eet. J.L.B. offer some felicitous line or other , may
the r eader par don me the discour tesy of having claimed it fir st. Our
inconsequential selves differ but little; the cir cumstance that you ar e the r eader
and I the wr iter of these exer cises is accidental and ir r elevant. Ed.??? [Pr eface
to El hacedor (????); to the "El otr o, el mismo" section of the ????, ????,
and ???? editions of Obr a poe?tica; and a second pr eface toEl otr o, el mismo
(????)] TO LEOPOLDO LUGONESLeaving behind the sounds of the plaza, I enter the
Libr ar y. At once, in an almost physical way, I feel the gr avitation of the books,
the quiet atmospher e of or der ed things, the past r escued and magically pr eser ved.
To left and r ight, r apt in lucid dr eam, the momentar y pr ofiles of the r eader s'
faces ar e outlined by the light (as in Milton's hypallage) of their studious lamps.
I r ecall having r ecalled this figur e befor e, in this same place, and then that
other epithet also defined by what sur r ounds it, "the ar id camel" of your Lunar io
sentimental, and after war d that hexameter fr om Vir gil which employs the same device
and goes beyond it:Ibant obscur i sola sub nocte per umbr am.These r eminiscences lead
me to the door of your office I enter . We exchange a few conventional and cor dial
wor ds, and I hand you this book. If I am not mistaken, you wer e r ather fond of me,
Lugones, and it would have pleased you to be pleased by some wor k of mine. That
never happened, but this time you tur n the pages and r ead appr ovingly some line or
other , maybe because you r ecognize your own voice in it, maybe because my faulty
execution means less to you than the soundness of my aims. At this point my dr eam
dissolves--like water in water . The vast libr ar y all ar ound me is on Mexico Str eet,
not on Rodr i?guez Pen?a, and you, Lugones, committed suicide ar ound the beginning
of ????. My vanity and my wistfulness have set up an impossible scene. This may be
so (I tell myself), but tomor r ow I too will be dead and our times will become one,
and chr onology will be lost in a wor ld of meaningless symbols, and in some way it
may be tr ue to say that I once handed you this book and that you accepted it.
J.L.B. Buenos Air es, ? August ???? ??? [Pr eface to the ????, ????, and ????
editions of Obr a poe?tica] FOREWORDThis pr eface might be ter med the aesthetics of
Ber keley, not because the Ir ish metaphysician--one of the most lovable men in the
whole histor y of philosophy--actually ever pr ofessed it, but because it applies to
liter atur e the same ar gument Ber keley applied to the outer wor ld. The taste of the
apple (states Ber keley) lies in the contact of the fr uit with the palate, not in
the fr uit itself; in a similar way (I would say), poetr y lies in the meeting of
poem and r eader , not in the lines of symbols pr inted on the pages of a book. What
is essential is the aesthetic act, the thr ill, the almost physical emotion that
comes with each r eading. Maybe ther e is nothing new in this, but at my age
novelties matter far less than tr uth.Liter atur e's magic is wor ked on us by var ious
ar tifices, but once the r eader finds them out they wear off. Out of this comes the
con- tinual need for gr eater or lesser var iations, which may r ecover a past or
pr efigur e a futur e.I have br ought together in this volume all of my poetr y except
for cer tain exer cises whose omission no one will r egr et or r emar k, and which (as
Edwar d William Lane said of cer tain tales of The Thousand and One Nights) could not
be pur ified without destr uction. I have polished a few infelicities and pr uned a
cer tain excess of Hispanisms and Ar gentinisms, but in gener al I have r esigned
myself to the sever al Bor ges, or same Bor ges, of ????, ????, ????, and ????, and
even to the Bor ges of ????. This volume includes some hither to un- published pieces
and a shor t appendix, or museum, of apocr yphal poems.As young poets ar e apt to do,
I once believed that fr ee ver se is easier than r egular ver se; now I r ealize that
fr ee ver se is mor e difficult, since it r equir es the inner conviction of many pages
of Car l Sand- bur g or of his father , Whitman.One of thr ee fates awaits a book of
poetr y: it may be r elegated to oblivion, it may not leave behind a single line and
yet give a sufficient pictur e of the man who wr ote it, or it may bequeath a few
poems to the anthologist.??? If the thir d wer e my case, I would like to sur vive in
the "Conjec- tur al Poem", in the "Poem of the Gifts", in "The Golem", and in
"Limits". But all poetr y is myster ious; nobody knows for sur e what it has been
given him to wr ite. The dr ear y mythology of our time speaks of the subconscious or ,
what is even less lovely, of subcon- sciousness. The Gr eeks invoked the Muse, the
Hebr ews the Holy Ghost; the meaning is the same. J.L.B. Buenos Air es, ??
August ???? [Pr eface to Par a las seis cuer das (????)] FOREWORDAll r eading implies a
collabor ation and, in a sense, a complicity. If we want to enjoy Estanislao del
Campo's Fausto, we must accept that a gaucho could possibly follow the plot of an
oper a sung in a language unknown to him; if we want to enjoy Jose? Her na?ndez'
Mar ti?n Fier r o, we must accept the unlikely succession of boasts and self-pity
justi- fied by the political aims of the wr iter but quite for eign to the har dy
char acter of the gauchos and to the way a payador takes car e not to offend an
unknown audience.In the humble case of my milongas, in place of the missing music
the r eader must imagine a man cr ooning to himself on his door step or in a cor ner
saloon, and accompanying himself on the guitar . His hand seems to linger on the
str ings, and the wor ds matter less than the tune. I have done my best to avoid the
sentimentality of the pr esent-day tango and the ar tificial use of slang, which
lends a spur ious air to the simple lyr ics.As
far as I am awar e, these ver ses need no fur ther explanation. J.L.B. Buenos Air es,
June ??????? [Pr eface to Seis poemas escandinavos (????)] * What secr et r oads led
me to the love of all things Scandinavian? May- be the ties of blood, since my
people on my father 's side came fr om Nor thumber land, which once was Viking countr y.
(This r ather far - fetched explanation is har dly sufficient; nobody year ns for what
is alr eady his.) Maybe a copy of the Vo?lsunga Saga my father gave me about half a
centur y ago, tr anslated by William Mor r is and Eir i?kr Magnu?sson into a kind of
ar chaic, almost pur ely Saxon English. Maybe an impr essive illustr ation in a histor y
of the wor ld--under their hor ned helmets, the Vikings, spear s in hand, seemed to be
look- ing me in the face, while in the backgr ound I could see the long ships with
boldly str iped sails bellying out dr amatically. Maybe the magic of cer tain wor ds:
Denmar k, Nor way, fjor d, Odin, and Thor , the god of thunder , whose name sur vives in
Thur sday. Maybe the stiff and stubbor n symbols of a r unic alphabet. These things,
of cour se, ar e guesswor k. Later , ther e came Tacitus' Ger mania, whose com- pr essed
and difficult Latin I was once able to decipher ; and the stor my figur e of Char les
XII, who swept Voltair e into epic wr iting; and the fier y pr ose of Thomas Car lyle.
Still later , the discover y--even yet not clear ly under stood--that Ger manic cultur e
r eached its flower ing in Iceland, the Ultima Thule of the classical wor ld. And
later still, the fact (which I hope one day to pur sue) that the fir st subjects in
English liter atur e wer e Scandinavian--Beowulf and Scyld and "the sixty men of
victor y in the battle of war r ior s". Then, the study of the medieval texts.The epic
is one of the necessities of the human mind. But with few exceptions--Lawr ence of
Ar abia is one--it seems to have been for - gotten by contempor ar y wr iter s. Many
people now sear ch for the epic in Wester n movies and in their har d r ider s. Mor e
than in the Gr eeks and Romans and in the Lay of the Nibelungs, I have found the
epic in the pr ose and poetr y of the Nor th. Hence, these poems. * Pr ivately pr inted
by Gustavo Fillol Day in an edition of eighty-four copies (only fifty-seven of
which have been issued to date), with illustr ations by Juan Car los Benitez, Buenos
Air es, ????. The six poems ar e "Fr agmento", "Hengest cyning", "A una espada en
Yor k" (not in the pr esent selection), "Snor r i Stur luson (????- ????)", "A Car los
XII", "Emanuel Swedenbor g". ??? I am not, by the way, the fir st intr uder in the
Spanish language to have explor ed such latitudes. Ricar do Jaimes Fr eyr e's Castalia
ba?r bar a (????), which contains these r esounding ver ses, should not be over -
looked:Un Dios mister ioso y extr an?o visita la selva.Es un Dios silencioso que
tiene los br azos abier tos.[A str ange, myster ious God visits the for est. A silent
God who stands with open ar ms.] One final explanation. "Hengest Cyning" in Old
English means "Hengest the K ing". He was, accor ding to Bede, the fir st Ger manic
adventur er to found a r oyal line on English soil. He and his br other came fr om the
nor th of Denmar k.J.L.B. Buenos Air es, ?? December ???? [Pr eface to Siete poemas
(????)] * FOREWORDTher e is something myster ious about the sonnet. Its for m--two
quatr ains and two ter cets of cer tain fixed line lengths, or , as pr acticed by
Shakespear e, thr ee quatr ains and a r hymed couplet--may seem ar bitr ar y, but
thr oughout the centur ies and acr oss geogr aphy it has displayed a capacity for
endless modulations. Any poem that follows the patter n of Manr ique's elegy will
never amount to mor e than an echo of Manr ique, but a sonnet by Lugones does not
r emind us of one by Go?ngor a, nor do the sonnets of Go?ngor a r emind us of those by
Lope. Who does not immediately r ecognize the voice of Milton, Wor dswor th, Rossetti,
Ver laine, or Mallar me?? I want to say something about my own effor ts. I have been
cr iti- cized for the pover ty of my vocabular y and r hymes. I have deli- * Pr ivately
pr inted by Juan Osvaldo Viviano in an edition of twenty-five copies, with
illustr ations by Jor ge Lar co, Buenos Air es, ????. The seven poems ar e "El suen?o",
"El mar ", "Juni?n", "Una man?ana de ????", "Un soldado de Lee (????)", "El
laber into", "Laber into". (All but the fir st and last of these ar e in the pr esent
selection.) ??? ber ately sought such pover ty. It is my belief that only common
wor ds can move us, and not those glibly pr ovided by dictionar ies; as to out-of-the-
way r hymes, they mer ely distr act, impede, or star tle the r eader . A stanza like?Que?
descansada vidala del que huye el mundanal r u?idoy sigue la escondidasenda, por
donde han idolos pocos sabios que en el mundo han sido! seems to me mor e skillfully
r hymed thanEl jar di?n, con sus i?ntimos r etir os, Dar a? a tu alado ensuen?o fa?cil
jaula, Donde la luna te abr ir a? su aulaY yo ser e? tu pr ofesor de suspir os.*whose
studied sounds, of cour se, I cannot help but appr eciate.As to the following
exer cises, let them be judged by the r eader . Abstr act r easoning cannot impr ove a
poem. Emer son has alr eadyr emar ked that ar guments convince nobody. J.L.B. [Pr eface
to the ???? edition of Fer vor de Buenos Air es] I have not r ewr itten this book. I
have toned down its over wr ought style, I have smoothed its r ough spots, I have
deleted sentimentality and impr ecisions, and, in the cour se of this wor k, at times
pleasant and other times mer ely uncomfor table, I have felt that that young man who
wr ote the book in ???? was alr eady essentially--what is the meaning of
"essential"?--the elder ly man who now r esigns himself or else r ewr ites. We ar e the
same per son, both disbelieving either in failur e or success or in liter ar y schools
and their dogmas, both fond of Schopenhauer , Stevenson, and Whitman. To my mind,
Fer vor de Buenos Air es for eshadows ever ything I was later to do. For what could be
r ead between its lines, for what it somehow pr omised, * The fir st example is fr om
Fr ay Luis de Leo?n's "Vida r etir ada", the second fr om Leopoldo Lugones' "Luna
cr epuscular ". Ed. ??? Enr ique Di?ez-Canedo and Alfonso Reyes gener ously gave it
their appr oval. Like the young men of ????, those of ???? wer e equally shy. Fear ing
their own inner pover ty, they tr ied--as now--to hide it away under loud and
innocent novelties. I, for example, set myself too many goals: to ape cer tain
cr udities (which I liked) in Miguel de Unamuno, to be a Spanish wr iter of the
seventeenth centur y, to be Macedonio Fer na?ndez, to invent the metaphor s alr eady
invented by Lugones, to celebr ate a Buenos Air es of one-stor y houses, and--to the
west or to the south--villas sur r ounded by ir on fences. At that time, I sought
sunsets, the city's outer slums, and un- happiness; now I seek mor nings, the
downtown, and peace. J.L.B. Buenos Air es, ?? August ???? [Pr eface to the ????
edition of Luna de enfr ente and Cuader no San Mar ti?n] Ar ound ????, the cr itic
Her mann Bahr decided: "The one duty--to be moder n." Some twenty-odd year s later , I
too took upon myself that quite super fluous obligation. To be moder n is to be a
contem- por ar y, to be of the pr esent. This is a fate we cannot avoid. Nobody
--apar t fr om a cer tain adventur er dr eamed up by Wells--has dis- cover ed the ar t of
living in the futur e or the past. Ther e is no book which is not of its own time;
the painstaking histor ical novel Salammbo^, whose char acter s ar e mer cenar ies dur ing
the Punic War s, is a typical nineteenth-centur y Fr ench novel. The one thing we know
for sur e about Car thaginian liter atur e, which may have been ver y r ich, is that it
could not have had a book like Flauber t's. I also tr ied my har dest to be Ar gentine,
oblivious of the fact that I alr eady was. I went in for the r isky acquisition of
one or two dic- tionar ies of local usage that gave me wor ds whose meanings I can
now har dly make out--"madr ejo?n", "espadan?a" "estaca pampa", and so for th.The city
of Fer vor de Buenos Air es always has something pr ivate about it; the city of this
volume is r ather ostentatious and public. I do ??? not want to be unjust to this
book. Cer tain pieces in it--"The Mythical Founding of Buenos Air es", "Gener al
Quir oga Rides to His Death in a Car r iage"--per haps contain all the dazzling beauty
of a decalcomania; other s--"Deathwatch on the Southside" is one-- do not, I ventur e
to say, dishonor the man who wr ote them. The fact is that I feel r emoved fr om them;
I take no r esponsibility for their mistakes or for their possible vir tues. I have
made few changes in these two collections. They ar e no longer mine. J.L.B. Buenos
Air es, ?? August ???? [Dedication to the ???? edition of Luna de enfr ente and
Cuader no San Mar ti?n] TO LEONOR ACEVEDO DE BORGESI want to leave a wr itten
confession which at one and the same time will pr ove per sonal and gener al, since
the things that happen to any man happen to all men. I am speaking of something now
lost and far away--my ear liest bir thdays. I used to accept pr esents, thinking the
whole while that I was no mor e than a child and that I had done nothing--absolutely
nothing--to deser ve them. Of cour se, I never spoke of this; childhood is an age of
shyness. Since then, you have given me so many things, and the year s and the
memor ies ar e so many. Father ; Nor ah; all four gr andpar ents; your memor ies, and in
them the memor ies of your for efather s--the patios, the slaves, the water seller ,
the char ge of those Per uvian hussar s, and the shame of Rosas--your honor able
impr isonment, when so many of us men kept silence; the mor nings in Montevideo,
Geneva, and Austin; the br ight and dar k times shar ed; your youthful old age; your
love of Dickens and of Ec?a de Queir o?s--Mother , you your self. These wor ds ar e
just between us two, et tout le r este est litte?r atur e, as Ver laine, in his fine
liter ar y way, wr ote. J.L.B. Buenos Air es, ? October ??????? [Pr eface to El otr o,
el mismo (????)] Of my many books of ver se, scr ibbled out of
laziness, car elessness, and at times passion, El otr o, el mismo is the one I
pr efer . Her e ar e the "Poem of the Gifts", the "Conjectur al Poem", "A Rose and
Milton", "The Other Tiger ", "Limits", and "Juni?n", which, if I am not led astr ay
by par tiality, do me no dishonor . Her e also ar e my habits: Buenos Air es; the cult
of my ancestor s; the study of old Ger manic languages; the contr adiction of time,
which passes, and of the ego, which lives on; my amazement that time--our
substance--may be shar ed with other s.This book is no mor e than a compilation. The
pieces in it wr ote themselves not to make up a volume but out of differ ent moods
and occasions, so that the fact that each poem was wr itten for its own sake
accounts for cer tain monotonies of theme and for the r epetition of wor ds and maybe
even of whole lines. In his liter ar y cir cle on what was then Victor ia Str eet, the
wr iter --let's call him that--Alber to Hidalgo pointed out my habit of composing the
same page, with slight var iations, twice over . I now r epent having answer ed him
that he was no less binar y, except that in his case the fir st ver sion was somebody
else's. Such wer e the r egr ettable manner s of that time, which many people today
look back on sentimentally. We wer e all doing our best to be the her oes of tr ivial
anecdotes. Hidalgo was r ight; "Alexander Selkir k",* for example, does not gr eatly
differ fr om "Odyssey, Book Twenty-thr ee", and "The Dagger " for e- shadows the
milonga I have titled "A K nife on the Nor thside"* and maybe also my shor t stor y
"The Meeting". What is str ange, what I fail to under stand, is that my second
ver sions, like muffled, unwitting echoes, ar e usually infer ior to my fir st. Once,
in Lubbock, on the edge of the Texas deser t, a tall gir l asked me whether on
setting down "The Golem" I had not wr itten a var iation of "The Cir cular Ruins". I
told her that I had tr aveled fr om the other end of the hemispher e in or der to be
handed that r evelation, which was tr ue. The two pieces do, however , have their
differ ences: the shor t stor y is about the dr eamer who is dr eamed; the poem, which I
wr ote later , about the r elationship between God and man, and per haps between the
wr iter and his wor k.* Not in the pr esent selection. Ed.??? Man's languages ar e
tr aditions that have something fatal about them. Individual exper iments, in fact,
amount to little, except when the innovator is content to evolve a museum piece--a
game, like Finnegans Wake or Go?ngor a's Soledades, designed for the discussion of
liter ar y histor ians or for mer e notor iety. On occasion, I have been tempted into
tr ying to adapt to Spanish the music of English or of Ger man; had I been able to
car r y out that per haps impossible adven- tur e, I would be a gr eat poet, like
Gar cilaso, who gave us the music of Italy, or like the anonymous Sevillian poet who
gave us the music of Rome, or like Dar i?o, who gave us that of Ver laine and Hugo. I
never went beyond r ough dr afts, woven of wor ds of few syllables, which ver y wisely
I destr oyed. The fate of a wr iter is str ange. At fir st, he is bar oque--ostenta-
tiously bar oque--and after many year s he may attain, if the star s ar e auspicious,
not simplicity, which in itself is nothing, but a modest and hidden complexity.Less
than by any school, I have been educated by a libr ar y--my father 's--and despite the
vicissitudes of time and space, I believe I have not r ead those beloved volumes in
vain. In the "Conjectur al Poem", the influence of Br owning's dr amatic monologues is
obvious; in other s, the influence of Lugones and, I hope, of Whit- man. On
r er eading these pages, I have felt closer to Moder nism than to those later sects
that wer e spawned by its decadence and that now deny it. Pater wr ote that all ar ts
aspir e to the condition of music, per haps because in music meaning is for m, since
we ar e unable to r ecount a melody the way we can r ecount the plot of a stor y.
Poetr y, if we accept this statement, would be a hybr id ar t--the r eduction of a set
of abstr act symbols, language, to musical ends. Dictionar ies ar e to blame for this
er r oneous idea, for , as we seem to for get, they ar e ar tificial r epositor ies,
evolved long after the languages they explain. The r oots of language ar e ir r ational
and of a magical natur e. The Dane who utter ed the name of Thor or the Saxon who
utter ed the name of Thunor did not know whether these wor ds stood for the god of
thunder or for the noise that follows the lightning. Poetr y tr ies to r ecaptur e that
ancient magic. Without set r ules, it wor ks in a hesitant, dar ing manner , as if
advancing in dar kness. Poetr y is a??? myster ious chess, whose boar d and whose
pieces shift as in a dr eam and over which, after I am dead, I shall go on por ing.
J.L.B.Buenos Air es, ?? October ???? [Tr anslations by Nor man Thomas di Giovanni in
collabor ation with the author ] IV: Supplement ?f ???? Revisions Upon completion of
Elogio de la sombr a in June ????, Bor ges' pub- lisher s decided to divide the Obr a
poe?tica ????-???? into thr ee par ts and to issue a new edition of the author 's
poetr y in four unifor m, individual volumes. For this edition, Bor ges, the r estless
and habitual r eviser of his poems, leaped at the oppor tunity to over haul his wor k
once mor e and to weed out some of the weaker pieces. The r evisions wer e heaviest in
Fer vor de Buenos Air es, while in El otr o, el mismo they wer e concer ned almost
exclusively with cor r ecting mispr ints. I helped Bor ges with this wor k in all the
volumes except Fer vor , r eading the texts to him, discussing the possible changes,
and then taking down his dictation. I was near ly as eager to see this wor k done as
he was because it affor ded us the chance to set str aight a lar ge number of
typogr aphical and other er r or s that we had been catch- ing and collecting over the
months; many of these mistakes went back a number of year s. Unfor tunately, however ,
we wer e not in Buenos Air es to check final pr oof of most of this new edition, so
that while a gr eat deal in it was cor r ected, it also contains fr esh mistakes of its
own.While we wor ked away, Bor ges in his char acter istic humor spoke of our
"disinfecting" the texts. Ar e these latest r evisions definitive? Har dly. No sooner
had we finished when Bor ges elatedly told a fr iend to be on the lookout for these
new volumes because at last they wer e "just the way I want the poems to r ead".
Then, suddenly bemused, he added, "For a while, at least." It was too late to
incor por ate most of the r evisions of Bor ges' ear ly poems into the pr esent book. At
the time these r evisions wer e made, near ly all of the ear ly poems had alr eady been
tr anslated. In the case of Fer vor de Buenos Air es, new r eader s ar e possibly better
ser ved by the ???? texts, which ar e closer in spir it to the or iginals, for much
cutting and r ewr iting went into the ???? r evisions; nor do Bor ges' addition of two
new poems ("The Southside" and "Rose") and appr opr iation of another ("Lines I Might
Have Wr itten and Lost Ar ound ????") fr om El otr o, el mismo amount to much ??? mor e
than whims. This supplement lists all ???? r evisions not adopted in the texts of
the pr esent selection of poems. Only author 's r evisions and none of the fr esh
er r or s ar e taken into account. Mor e infor ma- tion about these latest r evisions is
given on pp. ???-??. FERVOR DE BUENOS AIRES*Calle desconocida?. ?. ?.?. ??. ??. ??.
??. ??.como una mu?sica esper ada y antigua, como un gr ato declive.En esa hor a en
que la luztiene una finur a de ar ena,di con una calle ignor ada,cuyas cor nisas y
par edes mostr abanTodo--la mediani?a de las casas,las modestas balaustr adas y
llamador es,entr o? en mi vano cor azo?nQuiza? esa hor a de la tar de de plata??-??.
dier a su ter nur a a la calle,??. hacie?ndola tan r eal como un ver soolvidado y
r ecuper ado. ??-?. [lacking] ??. So?lo despue?s r eflexione???. que aquella calle de
la tar de er a ajena, ??. que toda casa es un candelabr o??. donde las vidas de los
hombr es ar dencomo velas aisladas,??. camina sobr e Go?lgotas.Inscr ipcio?n sepulcr al
Dedication. Par a mi bisabuelo, el cor onel Isidor o Sua?r ez ?. Impuso en la llanur a
de Juni?nte?r mino ventur oso a la batalla ?. Eligio? el honr oso destier r o.* For
change in or der of texts, see p. ???. ??? ?. Ahor a es un poco de ceniza y de
glor ia.Un patio?. Esta noche, la luna, el clar o ci?r culo, ?. no domina su espacio.
Sala vaci?a?. de tiempo detenido en un espejo?. y ante nuestr o examen se
pier den ??. [lacking] ??-??. Desde hace lar go tiemposus angustiadas voces nos buscan
??. y ahor a apenas esta?n??-??. La luz del di?a de hoyexalta los cr istales de la
ventanadesde la calle de clamor y de ve?r tigo ??. [lacking] ??-?. y ar r incona y
apaga la voz laciaRosas?. ?. ?.??. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??.sobr e la
decente blancur aalguien, como r epr oche car in?oso, pr onuncio? el nombr e familiar y
temido.como la sombr a de una montan?a r emota su nombr e fue desolacio?n en las
casas,y hor r or del tajo en la gar ganta.por que son venales las muer tes,si las
pensamos como par te del Tiempo, un hecho entr e los hechosque vivio? en la zozobr a
cotidianay dir igio? par a exaltaciones y penasEl mar , ahor a, es una separ acio?n
caudalosa ya toda vida, por humilde que sea,Remor dimiento por cualquier defuncio?n
?. de Quien deben negar se todos los pr edicados, ??. el caudal de las noches y de
los di?as. ??? Inscr ipcio?n en cualquier sepulcr o?. ga?r r ulas tr ansgr esiones al
todopoder del olvido,?. enumer ando con pr olijidad??. cuando tu? mismo er es el
espejo y la r e?plicaUltimo r esplandor Title. After glow?. por indigente o char r o que
sea,?-?. cuando el sol u?ltimo se ha hundido. ?. esa alucinacio?n que impone al
espacio??. como cesan los suen?osAmanecer ?.?. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??. ??.
??. ??.que apenas contr adicen los far olesCur ioso de la sombr a r evivi? la tr emenda
conjetur asino inmor tales como un bosque o un r i?o, la doctr ina anter ior [lacking] que
er igen en compar tida magia las
almas, y so?lo algunos tr asnochador es conser van, cenicienta y apenas bosquejada,la
imagen de las callescor r e peligr o de quebr anto,Per o de nuevo el mundo se ha
salvado.Despedida?-?. [lacking] ?. Oh tar des mer ecidas por la pena, ?-??. campos de
mi camino, fir mamentoque estoy viendo y per diendo . . . ??. Definitiva como un ma?
r mol??. entr istecer a? tu ausencia otr as tar des. ??? LUNA DE ENFRENTE Casas como a?
ngeles [lacking] Mi vida enter a?. [lacking] ?. He per sistido en la apr oximacio?n de
la dicha y en la intimidadde la pena.??. Cr eo que mis jor nadas y mis nochesse
igualan en pobr eza y en r iqueza a las de Dios y a las de todos los hombr es.
CUADERNO SAN MARTINA Fr ancisco Lo?pez Mer ino??. la ar diente gr avitacio?n del amor --
??. los car gados minutos que justifican ??. esta abr umada vida.??-?. en el que nos
bendice el olvido. EL OTRO, EL MISMOEl pun?al[follows "A un poeta sajo?n [II] "; for
the pr esent edition the author has made a slight r evision in the fifth par agr aph]
Li?neas que pude haber escr ito y per dido hacia ????[lacking; moved to Fer vor de
Buenos Air es, wher e it follows "Des- pedida"] El laber into[lacking; moved to Elogio
de la sombr a, wher e the lines ar e not capitalized] ??? NOTES FERVOR OF BUENOS
AIRES, pp. ?--?? "I wr ote these poems in ???? and ????, and the volume came out
ear ly in ????. The book was actually pr inted in five days; the pr inting had to be
r ushed, because it was necessar y for us to r etur n to Eur ope. . . . I had bar gained
for sixty-four pages, but the manuscr ipt r an too long and at the last minute five
poems had to be left out--mer ci- fully. I can't r emember a single thing about them.
The book was pr oduced in a somewhat boyish spir it. No pr oofr eading was done, no
table of contents was pr ovided, and the pages wer e unnumber ed. My sister made a
woodcut for the cover , and thr ee hundr ed copies wer e pr inted. In those days,
publishing a book was something of a pr ivate adventur e. I never thought of sending
copies to the book- seller s or out for r eview. Most of them I just gave away. I
r ecall one of my methods of distr ibution. Having noticed that many people who went
to the offices of Nosotr os--one of the older , mor e solid liter ar y magazines of the
time--left their over coats hanging in the cloak r oom, I br ought fifty or a hundr ed
copies to Alfr edo Bianchi, one of the editor s. Bianchi star ed at me in amazement
and said, 'Do you expect me to sell these books for you?' 'No,' I answer ed. 'Al-
though I've wr itten them, I'm not altogether a lunatic. I thought I might ask you
to slip some of these books into the pockets of those coats hanging out ther e.' He
gener ously did so. When I came back after a year 's absence, I found that some of
the inhabitants of the over coats had r ead my poems, and a few had even wr itten
about them. As a matter of fact, in this way I got myself a small r eputation as a
poet." Jor ge Luis Bor ges, "An Autobiogr aphical Essay", in The Aleph and Other
Stor ies ????-????, pp. ???-?. THE RECOLETA, p. ?See p. ???, note on "Deaths of
Buenos Air es". ???UNK NOWN STREET, p. ?Lines ?-?. De Quincey, in a footnote in his
Confessions of an English Opium-Eater (Collected Wr itings, vol. ?, p. ???), points
out that "the Jews in elder times made two twilights, fir st and second: the fir st
they called the dove's twilight, or cr epusculum of the day; the second they called
the r aven's twilight, or cr epusculum of the night". Bor ges has dr awn attention to
his mistake in at least thr ee differ ent editions of his poems, most r ecently in
that of ????.SEPULCHRAL INSCRIPTION, p. ?See p. ???, note on "A Page to Commemor ate
Colonel Sua?r ez, Victor at Juni?n".EMPTY DRAWING ROOM, p. ??This poem is about a
house Bor ges lived in on Bulnes Str eet in the ear ly twenties; for another glimpse
of shabby genteel family life in Buenos Air es, see "The Elder Lady" in Doctor
Br odie's Repor t.ROSAS, p. ?? After six year s (????-??) of fr uitless militar y
effor t to incor por ate the outlying pr ovinces of the old Vicer oyalty of the Ri?o de
la Plata-- Ur uguay, Par aguay, and Bolivia--the pr ovinces of moder n-day Ar gentina
deter mined to declar e their own independence fr om Spain. But as the jealousies and
antagonisms deepened between liber al Buenos Air es intellectuals and the people of
the inter ior , the sear ch for a viable for m of gover nment became mor e and mor e
elusive. The delegates to the ???? Tucuma?n Congr ess, who signed the independ- ence
act, appointed an inter im supr eme dictator while they went about looking for a
king. The supr eme dictator r uled until ????. Meanwhile, the power of local bosses,
the caudillos, who held sway over their bands of gaucho cavalr y (montoner as), had
so incr eased that it soon became appar ent that they would oppose king, dictator , or
pr esident. When, in ????, congr ess dr afted a highly centr alist con- stitution, the
pr ovincial caudillos opposed it. The next fifteen year swer e fr aught with disunity,
chaos, and civil war . In this per iod, the ??? two gr eat factions r ose: the
Unitar ians (unitar ios), who favor ed a centr alist gover nment under Buenos Air es
leader ship; and the Feder alists (feder ales), who demanded local autonomy and at the
same time r ecognition by Buenos Air es of their r ights in the national par tner ship.
While the Unitar ians, who included a lar ge par t of the wealthy and cultur ed
families of Buenos Air es, wer e clear in their stand, the Feder als wer e split
between mutually suspicious pr ovincial caudillos and the Buenos Air es par ty.
Feder alism, for each of these factions, pr oved to hold differ ent meanings, and by
the end of Rosas' r eign it was little mor e than a cover for the self-ser ving
sectionalism of the capital and the r ancher s of Buenos Air es pr ovince. Out of this
upheaval of the ????'s, in the sear ch for a man str ong enough to cr ush all
opposition, came Juan Manuel de Rosas. Bor n in ???? of a leading Buenos Air es
family, he gr ew up on the pampa on his father 's r anch, of which he became manager
at the age of sixteen. Competent, str ict but just with his gauchos, by the age of
twenty-five Rosas was a lar ge landowner and cattle br eeder , and by ???? a power -
ful caudillo. With his small ar my, dr essed by him in r ed (which became the color of
the Feder als), he began inter vening in politics; in ????, he mar ched on Buenos
Air es to put down an upr ising, and in the outcome he was installed as gover nor . As
a r esult of intense politi- cal intr igue, Rosas had become the chosen instr ument of
a power ful gr oup of landowner s in the Pr ovince of Buenos Air es who wer e con- vinced
that their well-being would be insur ed if contr ol of the pr o- vince and domination
of the nation's major por t wer e vested in their own number . Rosas' immediate policy
was the punishment of his enemies and the demand of total submission to the Feder al
par ty. The pur ge of Unitar ian ar my chiefs began; some wer e shot, other s jailed, and
the display of r ed r ibbons on all per sons became obligator y. His ter m up in ????,
Rosas r efused r e-election when the legislatur e would not extend his dictator ial
power s, and for the next thr ee year s he dedicated himself to extending the bor der s
of the pr ovince into Indian ter r itor y to the south and west of Buenos Air es. Dur ing
this expedi- tion, ?,??? hostiles wer e killed. Meanwhile, in the capital, Rosas'
wife (accor ding to cer tain sour ces) wor ked har d for his r etur n; in an effor t to
stage an upr ising, she founded a ter r or ist or ganization known as the mazor ca. Thr ee
weak gover nor s flounder ed in power , until at ??? last the legislative council
begged Rosas to r etur n. He did--on his own ter ms: "total power . . . for as long as
he thinks necessar y". Installed again in ????, for the next seventeen year s Rosas
r uled the countr y with an ir on hand. The ter r or spr ead, and the dictator was
pr oclaimed "Restor er of the Laws". In the str eets, the ser enos called out the hour s
with the chant, "Long live the Feder ation! Death to the savage Unitar ians! " This
was r epeated in the pr ess, fr om the pulpit, and in the schools. Of this ter r or , an
Amer ican r esident r e- por ted: "I have seen guar ds at mid-day enter the houses of
citizens and either destr oy or bear off the fur nitur e . . ., tur ning the families
into the str eets, and committing other acts of violence too hor r ible to mention."
In the mar ketplace, he continued, "Rosas hung the bodies of his many victims;
sometimes decor ating them in mocker y, with r ibands of the Unitar ian blue and even
attaching to the cor pses, labels, on which wer e inscr ibed the r evolting wor ds 'Beef
with the hide'." Ir onically, though Rosas never took a gr ander title than Gover nor
of Buenos Air es, his r ule was far mor e centr alist than the Unitar ians had ever
dr eamed. In his for eign policy, Rosas engaged the countr y in a war with Bolivia
(????-??); inter vened in the affair s of Ur uguay thr oughout the ????'sand ????'s;
got himself into a costly war with Fr ance (????-??); and suffer ed a blockade at the
hands of an Anglo-Fr ench for ce (????-??). Finally, by ????, he had lost his
suppor t. A r ival caudillo, with Br azilian and Ur uguayan aid, mar ched upon Buenos
Air es and defeated Rosas' Feder als at Monte Caser os on ? Febr uar y. Resigning as
gover nor , the dictator fled and was car r ied into exile aboar d a Br itish war ship. He
settled on a small far m in Southampton, wher e he died in ????; his r emains have
never beenr epatr iated.Both sides of Bor ges' family--to their ever lasting cr edit--
wer e staunch and active Unitar ians. As the r eader of these notes will find, sever al
of them wer e depr ived of their lives and for tunes, while other s endur ed year s of
exile. The old discor d went deep, and ir r ationality-- or bar bar ism--still has its
champions in pr esent-day Ar gentina. Bor ges found it necessar y to append the
following par agr aphs to the ???? edition of Fer vor de Buenos Air es: When I wr ote
this poem, I knew that one of my for efather s was a ??? for efather of Rosas. Ther e
is nothing r emar kable
about this fact, given the scant population of the Ar gentine and the almost
incestuous natur e of our histor y.Back ar ound ????, nobody for esaw the pr esent
r evisionism. This pastime consists of "r evising" Ar gentine histor y, not in or der to
get at tr uth but in or der to r each a for egone conclusion: the defense of Rosas or
of any other convenient despot. I still am, as may be seen, a savage Unitar ian.
GENERAL QUIROGA RIDES TO HIS DEATH IN A CARRIAGE, p. ??Domingo Sar miento has
r ecor ded that the leader of gauchos in the Ar gentine wasa Mohammed who could change
the dominant r eligion at will and set up a new one in its stead. He is omnipotent.
His injustice is a misfor tune for his victim, but it is not consider ed abuse,
because the caudillo is per mitted to be unjust; fur ther , he must necessar ily be
unjust. He has always been so.And when Sar miento published his famous book,
Civilization or Bar bar ism, in ????, it was Juan Facundo Quir oga whom he had chosen
as the centr al figur e in his histor y and the man who best r epr esented the r uthless
figur e of the caudillo. Facundo Quir oga (????-????), known as the "Jaguar of the
Plains", was bor n in La Rioja, and dur ing the ???o's had extended his power over
the eight-pr ovince r egion of the Andes. So cr uel was his r eputation (he typically
or der ed the thr oats cut of all pr isoner s who fell into his hands), so awesome was
his pr esence, that he br ed fear wher ever he went. Although nominally a Feder al,
Quir oga became a thr eat and an annoyance to Rosas, and, in ????, on his r etur n to
Co?r doba fr om a meeting with Rosas in Buenos Air es, Quir oga was ambushed and
mur der ed by the local r uling gang, the Reinafe? br other s. Though Rosas was quick to
or der a costly funer al for the fallen gener al and to demand the death sentence for
the assassins, it has always been believed that it was he who had ar r anged for
Quir oga's death. Year s later , fr om exile in England, Rosas wr ote:??? "They say I
or der ed the assassination of the illustr ious Gener al Quir oga. But have they pr oved
it?" Bor ges has wr itten about Quir oga in another poem, "Los llanos", also fr om Luna
de enfr ente. Some of its lines r ead:Over these plains Juan Facundo Quir oga
unleashed an empir e made of lances.An outlaw empir e, a pover ty-r idden empir e.An
empir e whose living dr ums wer e the hoof beats ofmustangs beating a r uffle r ound
humbled cities . . . An empir e of the knife that feasts on waiting, tr embling
thr oats. . . .The pr esent poem der ives fr om the vivid account of what took place at
Bar r anca Yaco in Par t ?, Chapter ?, of Sar miento's Facundo. Civilizacio?n y
bar bar ie en las pampas ar gentinas (as he later called it). Quir oga's coach was shot
at and swar med by a tr oop of gaucho militia with dr awn saber s, who at once hacked
the postilion and two or thr ee other s to pieces. The Gener al then stuck his head
out and asked for the commander of the par ty, or der ing him to dr aw near . "What's
the meaning of this?" asked Quir oga. For a r eply he r e- ceived a bullet in the eye
that left him dead. Then Santos Pe?r ez, who had shot Quir oga, r epeatedly stabbed
Quir oga's secr etar y with his swor d. When the executions wer e finished, the car r iage
was dr awn to the woods, filled with bodies. Even the hor ses wer e cut to pieces. A
small boy r emained alive. "Who's this boy?" asked Santos Pe?r ez. A ser geant in the
r aiding par ty stepped for war d and said: "This is my nephew; I answer for him with
my life." Santos Pe?r ez dr ew up to the man, shot him thr ough the hear t, quickly
dismounted, and while the boy scr eamed, thr ew him to the gr ound and slit his
thr oat. In a piece called "Dia?logo de muer tos", collected in El hacedor , Bor ges
has also imagined a conver sation after death between Rosas and Quir oga. MANUSCRIPT
FOUND IN A BOOK OF JOSEPH CONRAD, p. ?? Bor ges tells me that this poem had its
or igin in a pr actical joke played on him by Ne?stor Ibar r a, who commissioned him to
wr ite a piece, to be used for adver tising pur poses, in which some tobacco pr oduct
??? would be mentioned. Bor ges agr eed on condition that he not be r equir ed to name
any par ticular br and; following deliver y, Ibar r a paid him one or two hundr ed pesos.
Later , when the poem was never used, Bor ges began to suspect his gener ous fr iend's
joke.DULCIA LINQUIMUS ARVA, p. ?? The title is fr om Vir gil, Eclogue I, line ?:nos
patr iae finis et dulcia linquimus ar uaWe depar t fr om our own countr y, fr om the
sweet fields [of home] (tr . Dudley Fitts)Lines ? and ?. The ancestor s r efer r ed to
her e ar e the Acevedo and Sua?r ez on Bor ges' mater nal side. See in Elogio de la
sombr a the sonnet "Acevedo", on the town named for these settler s.??. Isidor o Sua?
r ez. ??. Fr ancisco Bor ges.SUNSET OVER VILLA ORTUZAR, p. ??Villa Or tu?zar was a poor
neighbor hood out by Buenos Air es' wester n cemeter y (La Chacar ita).SAN MARTIN
COPYBOOK , pp. ??-??Bor ges has wr itten that "the title has nothing to do with the
national her o; it was mer ely the br and name of the out-of-fashion copybook into
which I wr ote the poems. . . ."THE MYTHICAL FOUNDING OF BUENOS AIRES, p. ??Line ?.
Juan Di?az de Solis, looking for a passage to the Far East, enter ed the Ri?o de la
Plata (naming it El Mar Dulce, or Fr eshwater Sea) in Febr uar y ????. On r owing
ashor e, he and his companions wer e killed and eaten by Indians--all within sight of
his ships' cr ews. This pr obably took place on the Ur uguayan bank. A town called
Santa Mar i?a de Buenos Air es was founded by Pedr o de Mendoza at the beginning
of ????, but lasted only thr ee year s. The city was r e- founded in ???? by Juan de
Gar ay. ??? ??-??. The Riachuelo is a small str eam that mar ks the souther n limits of
Buenos Air es; the Boca del Riachuelo is a section of the city at the mouth of the
str eam.??. The actual Paler mo block wher e Bor ges gr ew up as a boy. ??. Hipo?lito
Yr igoyen (????-????), a Radical politician, ser ved as pr esident fr om ????-??; r e-
elected in ????, he was ousted by Gener al Jose? Ur ibur u in ????. Refer ence her e is
to the eve of the ???? election. ??. Jose? Sabor ido was an Ur uguayan, who, while
employed in the Buenos Air es customs, wr ote some of the ear liest tangos.ISIDORO
ACEVEDO, p. ?? Isidor o Acevedo (????-????), the author 's mater nal gr andfather . Of
him, Bor ges has r ecor ded: "One day, at the age of nine or ten, he walked by the
Plata Mar ket. It was in the time of Rosas. Two gaucho teamster s wer e hawking
peaches. He lifted the canvas cover ing the fr uit, and ther e wer e the decapitated
heads of Unitar ians, with blood- stained bear ds and wide-open eyes. He r an home,
climbed up into the gr apevine gr owing in the back patio, and it was only later that
night that he could br ing himself to tell what he had seen in the mor ning. In time,
he was to see many things dur ing the civil war s, but none ever left so deep an
impr ession on him."Line ?. The Ar r oyo del Medio is the br ook that mar ks the boun-
dar y between the pr ovinces of Buenos Air es and Santa Fe. Adolfo Alsina (????-????),
commander of civilian tr oops at Cepeda and Pavo?n, was an ar dent par tisan of
autonomy for the Pr ovince of Buenos Air es, of which he was made gover nor in ????;
he also ser ved as vice-pr esident of the Republic in ????. ??. Cepeda and Pavo?n
wer e battles fought, r espectively, in ???? and ????, in the civil war s that
followed the downfall of Rosas. Buenos Air es lost the fir st and won the second. The
battle of the Stockyar d flats (los Cor r ales) was fought in ????; again, it con-
cer ned the question of pr ovincial autonomy.??. Puente Alsina, another battle in the
???? str uggle. ???DEATHS OF BUENOS AIRES, p. ??La Chacar ita is the vast wester n
cemeter y of Buenos Air es, opened to accommodate the victims of the yellow-fever
epidemic of ????, when ??,??? people died in six months. La Recoleta is the old
nor ther n cemeter y, whose cr ypts ar e filled with Ar gentina's illustr ious dead,
including all of Bor ges' immediate ancestor s.Lines ??-?. These lines ar e fr om the
"Milonga de Ar nold". The next two r ead:La vida no es otr a cosaQue muer te que anda
luciendo.Ar nold was a convict, and he died in the pr ison colony in Tier r a del
Fuego, wher e he composed his poem.??. La Quema is the municipal inciner ator ,
located out by the cemeter y.??. Nuestr a Sen?or a del Socor r o, a downtown chur ch
dating fr om the end of the eighteenth centur y.??. Along these walls, Manuel Sua?
r ez, a ser geant major and a Unitar ian, was executed by Rosas in ????. He was
Isidor o Sua?r ez's br other .A note by Bor ges which r ecor ds cer tain details to do with
the wr iting of the fir st par t of the poem may be found on page ??? of
Poemas ????-????. TO FRANCISCO LOPEZ MERINO, p. ?? Fr ancisco Lo?pez Mer ino was a
minor poet, bor n in La Plata in ????, who committed suicide in ????. He wr ote
musical and plaintive ver ses that r eflected his inter est in the Fr ench and Belgian
symbolists. Bor ges, who had been a close fr iend of his, has wr itten a second poem
on his death; see "Mayo ??, ????" in Elogio de la sombr a (In Pr aise of Dar kness).
THE CYCLICAL NIGHT, p. ?? Line ??. David Hume was br ought into the poem in ????.
Or iginally, the line spoke of "The philologist Nietzsche", but after wr iting the
??? poem Bor ges found that, long befor e Nietzsche, Hume had stated and justified
the Stoic theor y of cyclical time in the eighth of his Dialogues Concer ning Natur al
Religion (????).??. Jer o?nimo de Cabr er a, sixteenth-centur y Andalusian conquista-
dor and founder , in ????, of the Ar gentine city of Co?r doba. Gener al Miguel
Estanislao Soler (????-????), fought in the Ar my of the Andes and at Ituzaingo?,
gover ned the Pr ovince of Montevideo, and ser ved as minister to Bolivia; though a
Feder al, he was opposed to Rosas, and for a time lived in exile in Ur uguay. For
Lapr ida and Sua?r ez, see, r espectively, the notes on "Conjectur al Poem" and "A Page
to Commemor ate Colonel Sua?r ez, Victor at Juni?n".CONJECTURAL POEM, p. ??
Fr ancisco Nar ciso de Lapr ida was bor n in the wester n Ar gentine
pr ovince of San Juan in ????, studied in Chile, and r eceived his law degr ee ther e
in ????. Retur ned to the city of San Juan the next year , wher e he pr acticed his
pr ofession, he was elected municipal magistr ate (alcalde) in ????. In the following
year s, he assisted in the suppor t of San Mar ti?n's Ar my of the Andes, which was
pr epar ing to liber ate Chile, and he was elected member and then pr esident of the
congr ess that met in Tucuma?n, in ????, and declar ed the independence of the
"United Pr ovinces of South Amer ica". In ????, he was r epr esentative of the Pr ovince
of San Juan in the constituent assembly, meeting in Buenos Air es, of which he was
made pr esident. He was a signer of the ???? constitution, but the next year , upon
failur e of the Unitar ian cause (the constitution pr oved too centr alist in spir it
for the r uling caudillos), Lapr ida r etir ed to San Juan. Under thr eat of per secution
by Quir oga, he was eventually for ced to flee to Mendoza, wher e he headed a small
division in defense against invasion by the "Jaguar of the Plains". In ????,
Lapr ida found himself dug in against the Aldao for ces; tr ying to escape after an
attack in violation of an ar mistice, Lapr ida was hunted down and killed by a tr oop
of gauchos. His body was never found.Jose? Fe?lix Aldao (????-????) was one of
thr ee soldier br other s who fought for the independence of Chile under San Mar ti?n
and later r uled their native pr ovince of Mendoza as caudillos. Beginning his ???
car eer as a pr iest and chaplain to the ar my, Aldao ended with the r ank of gener al
and ear ned a r eputation at the time of the events descr ibed in the poem as one of
Rosas' most bloodthir sty follower s.Bor ges is r elated to Lapr ida thr ough his
mater nal gr andfather .Lines ??-??. The captain is the Ghibbeline Buonconte of Monte-
feltr o, who was killed in the defeat of Campaldino on ?? June ????. See Pur gator io,
V, ??-???. This same incident is the subject of Rober t Lowell's sonnet "The
Soldier " in Lor d Wear y's Castle. Accor ding to one questionable theor y, Buonconte
may have actually been killed by Dante, who fought in the battle and later bestowed
immor tality on the captain.??. Cf. Pur gator io, V, ??:fuggendo a piede e sanguinando
il piano. A PAGE TO COMMEMORATE COLONEL SUAREZ, VICTOR AT JUNIN, p. ??? Isidor o
Sua?r ez (????-????), Bor ges' mater nal gr eat-gr andfather . Bor n in Buenos Air es, Sua?
r ez began his ar my car eer in ???? as a cadet in the Hor se Gr enadier s, and by ????
was in Mendoza as par t of the Ar my of the Andes, which was pr epar ing to cr oss the
cor diller a to liber ate Chile fr om Spanish domination. In the Chilean campaign, he
fought at Chacabuco (Febr uar y ????) and a few days later led a dar ing exploit, the
captur e in Valpar aiso har bor of a Spanish br igantine of war , in which his for ce of
four teen soldier s and seven sailor s over came the ship's cr ew of eighty-nine. This
won him advancement to second lieutenant. In ????, he took par t in the defeat of
Cancha Rayada (Mar ch) and the victor y of Maipu? (Apr il), acting with such gallantr y
in the latter battle that he was immediately pr omoted to fir st lieu- tenant. The
next year , he fought at Bi?o-Bi?o and at Chilla?n, and, in????, embar ked upon the
Per uvian campaign, wher e, in December , he fought at Pasco--again with distinction--
and was made captain. Dur ing the following two year s he took par t in at least six
other actions, and again moved up in r ank. In ????, under Boli?var 's com- mand,
Sua?r ez became the her o of the day in the famous battle of??? Juni?n; he later
fought at Ayacucho, and by the year 's end had been pr omoted by Boli?var to colonel.
The War of Independence now over , Sua?r ez r emained in Per u another two year s,
until, accused of having been par t of a conspir acy against Boli?var , he was exiled
to Chile, fr om which he r etur ned to Buenos Air es in ????. Ther e he was r eceived
with distinction, and, cr ossing over into Ur uguay, he fought in the war against the
Br azilian Empir e. At this time, Sua?r ez also became active in the Unitar ian cause;
in ????, he fought at Las Palmitas, in the Pr ovince of Buenos Air es, wher e he
defeated a minor Feder al caudillo. The next year , when the Unitar ians had lost
power , he emigr ated to Ur uguay. In ????, mar r ying into an old Ur uguayan family, he
settled on the land. He still continued to take par t in the r esistance against
Rosas into the ????'s, but in ill health he r etir ed to Montevideo, wher e he died.
Sua?r ez had been decor ated mor e than twenty times. His r emains wer e br ought back to
Ar gentina in ????, and a town was named for him in the south of the Pr ovince of
Buenos Air es.The battle of Juni?n was fought in the highlands of Per u on ?
August ????. The Royalist for ces wer e made up of two cavalr y units, totaling ????
men; the Republicans, of a number of cavalr y squad- r ons, number ing ??? men, under
Gener al Necochea. Two of these squadr ons, the Hussar s of Per u, wer e held in r eser ve
back of a mar shy str etch of land at the souther n end of the battlefield. These
r eser ve for ces wer e commanded by the young Sua?r ez. The Republicans wer e bottled up
in a nar r ow pass between a hill on one side and a mar sh cut by a str eam on the
other , and wer e thus unable to get out onto the open plain. It was five o'clock in
the after noon. Only two squadr ons wer e able to meet the onr ushing Royalists, and
both of them wer e dr iven back. At this point, the second Republican gener al,
Miller , began his attack; but his for ces wer e also br oken up. In the midst of this
disor der and confusion, Necochea's tr umpets sounded the call to r efor m, but his
effor ts wer e smashed by the Royalists, into whose hands he fell pr isoner with a
number of saber wounds. The air r ang with the dr y sound of steel against steel and
the anger and cur sing of men. Now fr om the mar shes came Sua?r ez's Hussar s,
attacking the Royalists fr om behind, cutting the enemy down with saber s and lances,
and br eaking their for ce. Encour aged by the spectacle, the r est ??? of the
Republican cavalr y r egr ouped and fr om the fr ont and flanks char ged the r egiments
that Sua?r ez was disper sing. Necochea was r escued; the battle lasted only for ty-
five minutes. The Royalist losses wer e nineteen officer s and ??? soldier s killed,
and eighty taken pr isoner ; the Republicans lost thr ee officer s and for ty-two
soldier s, while eight officer s and ninety-one soldier s wer e wounded. Boli?var
commended Sua?r ez, saying that "when histor y descr ibes the glor ious battle of Juni?
n . . . it will be attr ibuted to the br aver y and audacity of this young officer ; as
of today, you will no longer be the Hussar s of Per u but will be called the Lancer s
of Juni?n". Line ??. Cf. the opening line of Wor dswor th's sonnet "The power of
Ar mies is a visible thing . . ."Bor ges has made use of events in his gr eat-
gr andfather 's life in at least two stor ies. See the fir st and next-to-last
par agr aphs of "The Life of Tadeo Isidor o Cr uz (????-????)" in The Aleph and Other
Stor ies. In "The Elder Lady", fr om Doctor Br odies Repor t, Colonel Mar iano Rubio's
car eer par allels Sua?r ez's almost exactly. Sua?r ez's mother 's maiden name, by the
way, was Mer lo y Rubio.MATTHEW XXV: ??, p. ???Matthew XXV: ??--"And cast ye the
unpr ofitable ser vant into outer dar kness: then ther e shall be weeping and gnashing
of teeth."Line ??. See Bor ges' commentar y on "The Dead Man" in The Aleph and Other
Stor ies, p. ???.THE DAGGER, p. ???Par agr aph ?. Luis Melia?n Lafinur (????-????),
Ur uguayan histor ian distantly r elated to Bor ges. He was Colonel Bor ges' fir st
cousin. Evar isto Car r iego (????-????) was the popular Buenos Air es poet who, in
Bor ges' wor ds, "discover ed the liter ar y possibilities of the r un-down and r agged
outskir ts of the city--the Paler mo of my boy- hood". He had been a neighbor of the
Bor ges family, and in ???? Bor ges published a book on him, Evar isto Car r iego.?.
Tacuar embo? is a town towar d the nor th of Ur uguay. This poem, wr itten dur ing the
last year s of the Per o?n dictator ship, ??? could not be published in the Ar gentine.
Tur ned down by La Nacio?n in an act of self-censor ship, it finally appear ed in
Montevideo, in Mar cha, on ?? June ????. Bor ges used it the next year as a chapter
in the second edition of his book on Car r iego.A SOLDIER OF URBINA, p. ???Cer vantes
ser ved as a pr ivate, in Italy, under Captain Diego de Ur bina in ????.A SAXON,
p. ??? The year ??? is given by Bede for the fir st Nor dic invasion of England. This
is Bor ges' ear liest poem on a Saxon theme, and he now deeply r egr ets the slip of
making his immigr ant Saxon face the Eng- lish climate unshod.Line ??. Woden and
Thunor ar e the Saxon names for Odin and Thor .??-?. These ar e actual Saxon kennings.
See Bor ges' piece "The Witness" in Appendix II of the pr esent volume.THE GOLEM,
p. ???Joshua Tr achtenber g, in Jewish Magic and Super stition, wr ites that the Ger man
Hasidim used "the wor d golem (liter ally, shapeless or lifeless matter ) to designate
a homunculus cr eated by the magical invocation of names, and the entir e cycle of
golem legends may be tr aced back to their inter est".Line ??. Though Judah Lo?w, the
seventeenth-centur y Jewish r abbi fr om Pr ague, is cr edited with making the Golem,
accor ding to Tr achtenber g the "legends of the golem wer e tr ansfer r ed . . . to R.
Judah Lo?w b. Bezalel, without any histor ical basis". It tur ns out that John
Hollander , the poem's tr anslator , is a descendant of Rabbi Lo?w (or Loew); after
making his tr anslation, Hollander was inspir ed to wr ite his own Golem poem, "Letter
to Bor ges: A Pr opos of the Golem", which admir ably complements the tr anslation.
Hollander 'spoem is pr inted in his book The Night Mir r or . ??? ??. Ger shom Scholem
is the distinguished Jewish scholar and author of Major Tr ends in Jewish Mysticism.
Bor ges' inter est in the legend of the Golem dates fr om an ear ly acquaintance with
Gustav Meyr ink's Der Golem, the fir st pr ose wor k in Ger man Bor ges ever r ead. See
Bor ges' ar ticle on "The Golem" inThe
Book of Imaginar y Beings, pp. ???-??. POEM OF THE GIFTS, p. ???Bor ges was named
Dir ector of the Ar gentine National Libr ar y after the fall of Per o?n in ????.
Line ??. Paul Gr oussac (????-????) had been a for mer dir ector of the Biblioteca
Nacional and was also a histor ian and cr itic whose pr ose style Bor ges has gr eatly
admir ed. A shor t eulogy, wr itten after Gr oussac's death, is collected in Bor ges'
Discusio?n. After wr iting the poem, Bor ges discover ed that Jose? Ma?r mol, the
nineteenth-centur y poet and novelist who dir ected the National Libr ar y until his
death in ????, had also gone blind.CHESS, p. ???The metaphor of life as a game of
chess is to be found in the Ruba?iya?t, Stanza ??:'Tis all a Chequer -boar d of
Nights and Days Wher e Destiny with Men for Pieces plays:Hither and thither moves,
and mates, and slays, And one by one back in the Closet lays.In his second edition,
FitzGer ald r evised this to r ead:Impotent Pieces of the Game he playsUpon this
Chequer -boar d of Nights and Days;Hither and Thither moves, and checks, and slays;
And one by one back in the Closet lays.ELVIRA DE ALVEAR, p. ??? Elvir a de Alvear
(????-????) was a wealthy Ar gentine society woman and minor poet who lived for
year s in Par is, wher e she knew Valer y ??? Lar baud, James Joyce, and Alfonso Reyes.
She and Bor ges wer e close fr iends for a long per iod. He wr ote a pr eface to her
poems in ????. Lines ?-?. Cf. Matthew IV: ?, "Again, the devil taketh him up into
an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the wor ld, and the
glor y of them;". ??. Ituzaingo?, battle in the war against the Br azilian Empir e,
fought in Ur uguay, ?? Febr uar y ????. Elvir a's gr eat-gr andfather , Gener al Car los de
Alvear , led the victor y.The poem is r epr oduced on a br onze plaque on the Alvear
family tomb in the Recoleta cemeter y.SUSANA SOCA, p. ???Susana Soca (????-????) was
an Ur uguayan society woman and patr on of the ar ts. She lived in Par is and also, in
Montevideo, edited a magazine called Entr egas de la licor ne. She died in an
air plane cr ash in Br azil.THE OTHER TIGER, p. ???The complete line fr om Mor r is r uns:
And the cr aft that cr eateth a semblance, and fails of the hear t's desir e;The sour ce
is Sigur d the Volsung, Book ?, "Regina telleth Sigur d . . ." (Collected Wor ks of
William Mor r is, vol. ??, p. ??).ALLUSION TO A SHADOW OF THE NINETIES, p. ??? Juan
Mur an?a was one of the famous knife fighter s of the old Nor th- side of Buenos Air es
befor e the tur n of the centur y. He cr ops up in sever al of Bor ges' stor ies and
poems. See "The Challenge" in The Aleph and Other Stor ies and "Juan Mur an?a" in
Doctor Br odie's Repor t. ALLUSION TO THE DEATH OF COLONEL FRANCISCO BORGES, p. ???
Fr ancisco Bor ges (????-????), the author 's pater nal gr andfather , was ??? bor n in
Montevideo, and became an ar tiller y cadet in ???? dur ing Or ibe's siege of the city.
Two year s later , he fought with an Ur uguayan division at Caser os, when Rosas was
over thr own. In ????, moving to the Ar gentine, he offer ed "his ar m and his swor d to
the gover nment of the State of Buenos Air es". In ????, he found himself a second
lieutenant in the ar my of Colonel (later Gener al) Emilio Mitr e, and under Mitr e's
command he fought against the cacique Coliqueo in the battle of the Can?ada de los
Leones and, the next year , in a fur ther expedition against the Indians. Fr om this
point on, Bor ges took par t in all the impor tant battles (including Cepeda and Pavo?
n) and many of the lesser engagements of the inter necine civil war s between Buenos
Air es pr ovince and the Ar gentine confeder ation, becoming captain in ???? and
ser geant major in ????. In ????, he fought in the war with Par aguay at Cor r ientes
(?? May), Yatay (?? August), and Ur uguayana (?? Septem- ber ); the next year , at
Paso de la Patr ia and Itapir u? (??-?? Apr il), Ester o Bellaco (? May), Tuyuti? (??
May) and Boquer o?n (??-?? July). He was wounded in each of these last two battles,
the second time sever ely enough to for ce him into a long convalescence back in
Buenos Air es, wher e he was pr omoted to lieutenant colonel. Fr om Febr uar y ???? to
the end of the year , he was back at the fr ont; in ????, he was made colonel. The
next year , he was given command of the souther n fr ontier of Buenos Air es, and in
June ???? he was sent to r elieve caudillo Lo?pez Jor da?n's siege of Par ana?. Ther e
he met an Englishwoman, Fr ances (Fanny) Haslam, whom he mar r ied the next year . In
this same year , ????, Bor ges was made commander in chief of the nor ther n and
wester n fr ontier s of Buenos Air es and the souther n fr ontier of Santa Fe, fighting
in punitive expeditions against cattle-r aiding Indians. In this capacity, he fought
the impor tant battle of San Car los, ? Mar ch ????. The next year , Bor ges was back in
Entr e Ri?os, putting down another r ebellion by Lo?pez Jor da?n, but by ear ly ???? he
was able to r etur n to his fr ontier outpost. To this point, Bor ges was the
pr ofessional soldier --"an object dr agged fr om battle to battle", as descr ibed in
one of his gr andson's poems. Then, in the last year of his life, he became involved
in a r evolt against the gover nment that was to for ce him into suicide. The ????
elections became a test between Sar miento, who, as pr esi- ??? dent, could not
succeed himself, and Gener al Bar tolome? Mitr e (Emilio's br other ), who had been
pr esident befor e Sar miento and who had announced his new candidacy. Sar miento, in
contr ol of patr onage and the election machiner y, was backing Nicola?s Avellaneda,
who was ultimately elected and inaugur ated in October ????. Meanwhile, Mitr e had
enlisted Bor ges' suppor t for his r evolution, which was to take place on ?? October ,
expecting Bor ges to br ing with him the tr oops at his command. When the gover nment
discover ed the plot, Colonel Bor ges was summoned and asked what attitude he would
assume in the conflict. "Until October ??," he said, "the gover nment may count on
my loyalty and on the tr oops entr usted to my honor ." But events pr ecipitated the
r evolt, and Bor ges, since he had given Sar - miento his wor d, found he could not
fulfill his pr omises to his per - sonal and political fr iends. Instead, he handed
over his tr oops to the gover nment and r esigned his command. Misunder standing his
action, his fr iends br anded him a tr aitor . On ?? October , alone, Bor ges joined the
upr ising, putting himself as a pr ivate citizen under Gener al Mitr e's or der s. The
next month he was in command of a br igade, under Mitr e, at the battle of La Ver de
(?? November ). Towar d the close of that day, Mitr e or der ed a r etr eat; Bor ges
pointed out that the enemy was about to r un out of fir e power , but his judgment
went unheeded. It was at this point, when the gener al r epeated his or der , that
Bor ges mounted his hor se and, accompanied by sever al of his loyal soldier s, slowly
r ode out, ar ms acr oss his chest, towar d the enemy lines. The r evolt failed, Mitr e
was impr isoned for sever al months, but his life was spar ed. Bor ges died fr om his
wounds twodays later . In his last wor ds, he said, "I have fallen in the belief of
having fulfilled my duty and my convictions, and for the same pr inciples that I
have fought all my life." In ????, Jor ge Luis Bor ges visited the battlefield at La
Ver de and saw the r oom at the estancia ther e wher e his gr andfather died. He now
plans a stor y ar ound the colonel's mor al conflict and the manner in which he met
his death.THE BORGES, p. ??? Lines ??-?? r efer to Sebastian, king of Por tugal
(????-????), who, ??? as a fanatical mystic, led an ill-fated cr usade against the
Moham- medans of nor thwest Afr ica. He and his ar my wer e annihilated in the deser t,
but many Por tuguese r efused to cr edit his death. Ther eafter , "Sebastianism" became
a r eligion, sur viving until the beginning of this centur y in Por tugal and Br azil.
The car eer of this "hidden king" is r eminiscent of that of Ar thur in Br itain and
Olaf in Nor way. EMBARK ING ON THE STUDY OF ANGLO-SAXON GRAMMAR, p. ???Line ?. The
vast r iver is the Ri?o de la Plata.?. Haslam is the name of Bor ges' English
ancestor s.?. "Last Satur day" r efer s to the fir st lesson Bor ges under took inAnglo-
Saxon, together with a handful of students, ar ound ???? or so. This incident is
descr ibed in the author 's "Autobiogr aphical Essay".?-??. "Julius Caesar . . .
Br itain": cf. the opening of the Anglo- Saxon Chr onicle (The Par ker Chr onicle):
"Sixty year s befor e the In- car nation of Chr ist, the emper or Julius Caesar was the
fir st of the Romans to invade Br itain. . .??. Refer ence is to one of the ninety-
five r iddles of the Exeter Book. ??. See Beowulf, lines ????-?.TO A MINOR POET
OF ????, p. ???The author had in mind an imaginar y Moder nist poet. In an ear lier
ver sion, the date ???? was given in the title. Bor ges later changed it for the
obvious r eason that ???? was the year of his bir th; in a playful way, he ther eby
makes himself into the minor poet of ????.HENGEST CYNING, p. ???Hengest's stor y is
told in the Anglo-Saxon Chr onicle, beginning in the year ???; his name is also
sometimes spelled "Hengist". "Cyning" is Anglo-Saxon for "king". Lines ??-??. The
Anglo-Saxon "ga?r -sceg" means both "spear - ??? man" ("spear -war r ior ") and "ocean".
Accor ding to Boswor th and Toller 's Anglo-Saxon Dictionar y (p. ???),The myth of an
ar med man--a spear -man is employed by the Anglo- Saxons as a ter m to denote the
Ocean, and has some analogy to the per - sonification of Neptune holding his
tr ident. Spear s wer e placed in the hands of the images of heathen gods. . . .
FRAGMENT, p. ???In the notes to Seven Saxon Poems (Plain Wr apper Pr ess, ????),
Bor ges wr ote:This poem was wr itten in Texas, in ????. I had been str uck by a
str ange exper iment by the Bolivian poet Ricar do Jaimes Fr eyr e, a sonnet of beauty
and wor d music with no par ticular meaning. Using a quite differ ent theme, I tr ied
to do something similar in fr ee ver se. I have wor ked in a number of Saxon and Old
Nor se kennings.TO A SAXON POET, p. ???The
poet addr essed is the monk who composed "The Battle of Br u- nanbur h", in which
Ir ish Nor semen, Welsh and Scots fought a com- bined ar my of Mer cians and West
Saxons in the year ???.Line ?. Cf. "The Battle of Br unanbur h", in line ??:mA?r e
tungol,SNORRI STURLUSON, p. ???Snor r i Stur luson (????-????), the Icelandic
histor ian, mythologist, poet, jur ist, statesman, and author of the Younger Edda and
the Heimskr ingla, or Stor ies of the K ings of Nor way.TO CHARLES XII OF SWEDEN,
p. ???Char les XII (????-????), king of Sweden and, accor ding to Voltair e, who wr ote
his biogr aphy, the most extr aor dinar y man who ever lived.??? EMANUEL SWEDENBORG, p.
??? Emanuel Swedenbor g (????-????), Swedish scientist, philosopher and visionar y.
He lived for many year s in London, wher e he died. EMERSON, p. ???See Emer son's poem
"Days".RAFAEL CANSINOS-ASSENS, p. ???Rafael Cansinos-Assens (????-????), Spanish
poet, novelist and pr ime mover of the ultr aist movement. For his r elationship with
Bor ges, see Bor ges' "Autobiogr aphical Essay" in The Aleph and Other Stor ies,
pp. ???-?.EVERNESS, p. ???The wor d "ever ness" was coined by John Wilkins, the
seventeenth- centur y English chur chman and inventor of a univer sal philosophical
language.The title of the companion sonnet, "Ewigkeit", is Ger man for "eter nity".
OEDIPUS AND THE RIDDLE, p. ???For other for ms of the r iddle, see Bor ges' ar ticle on
"The Sphinx" inThe Book of Imaginar y Beings, pp. ???-??. ANOTHER POEM OF GIFTS,
p. ???Line ??. Angelus Silesius, pseudonym of Johann Scheffler (????- ????), Ger man
poet and mystic.??. Refer ence is to the downfall of Per o?n in September ????. On
the sixteenth, ther e wer e ar my r evolts in Co?r doba, Rosar io, Santa Fe, and Par ana?;
on the nineteenth, Per o?n r esigned, fleeing the countr y aboar d a Par aguayan
gunboat; on the twenty-thir d, Gener al Lonar di took power as pr ovisional pr esident.
??? ??. Gesta Dei per Fr ancos may be r oughly tr anslated as "Deeds of God done
thr ough the Fr ench". It was a medieval wor k. ??. Josiah Royce, illustr ating the
concept of infinity in The Wor ld and the Individual (????), imagined a map of
England that cor r esponded point for point with England itself. Consequently, it
included the map, and within the map the map of the map ad infinitum. See Bor ges'
piece "Of Exactitude in Science" in A Univer sal Histor y of Infamy. ??. Fr ances
Haslam (????-????) was Bor ges' English gr andmother on his father 's side and was
Colonel Bor ges' wife. See the fir st chapter of Bor ges' "Autobiogr aphical Essay".ODE
WRITTEN IN ????, p. ???Composed for the ???th anniver sar y of the declar ation of
indepen- dence of the Ar gentine confeder ation, which took place in Tucuma?n
in ????. Pr esident of the Tucuma?n Congr ess at that time was Fr ancisco Nar ciso de
Lapr ida. See note on "Conjectur al Poem".Lines ?-?. The r ider is San Mar ti?n, whose
equestr ian statue stands in the Buenos Air es plaza named for him.JUNIN, p. ???This
Juni?n, named after the famous battle, is the town in the Pr ovince of Buenos Air es,
some ??? miles west of the Ar gentine capital. Colonel Bor ges commanded the fr ontier
outpost ther e in the ear ly ????'s.A MORNING OF ????, p. ???Char les I (????-????),
king of Gr eat Br itain and Ir eland, was be- headed on ?? Januar y ???? dur ing the
English civil war s. He r efused to r ecognize the cour t that tr ied him, and on the
scaffold said that he "did not believe the happiness of people lay in shar ing
gover nment, subject and sover eign being clean differ ent".TO A SAXON POET, p. ???The
poet addr essed this time is the unknown author of "The Wander er ". ??? Line ?. The
allusion to pine tr ees is fr om Tacitus' Ger mania. ??. Cf. "The Wander er ", fir st
half of line ?:wadan wr aecla?stas;MILONGA OF THE TWO BROTHERS, p. ???The milonga is
a for er unner of the tango, dating fr om the ????'s. Accor ding to one author ity,
Ventur a R. Lynch, it was invented by Buenos Air es hoodlums (compadr itos) as a
par ody of Negr o dances; Vicente Rossi, in his book Cosas de negr os, claims the
milonga or i- ginated out on the edges of Montevideo. The fir st milongas wer e
danced.Line ?. The Costa Br ava was an ar ea to the south of Buenos Air es, between
Tur der a and Lomas de Zamor a, notor ious for its tough in- habitants.??. The Iber r as
wer e five br other s fr om Lomas de Zamor a, the most infamous of whom was Julio. Ther e
is a br ief ar ticle on this family in Bor ges' anthology El compadr ito, second
edition (????), pp. ??-?.MILONGA OF ALBORNOZ, p. ??? Alejo Albor noz was a Buenos
Air es hoodlum, who was actually knifed ar ound ???? or ????. His stor y was told to
Bor ges by an old police captain, don Jose? Olave. Many details in the poem have, of
cour se, been alter ed. THE GENEROUS ENEMY, p. ???Magnus Bar fod was king of Nor way
fr om ???? to ????. His stor y is told in the Heimskr ingla, but the letter fr om
Muir cher tach is a fiction. Magnus was called "Bar efoot" (or "Bar eleg") for having
br ought back fr om Scotland and Ir eland the custom of wear ing the kilt.The poem is
made up of a number of Nor se kennings, which Bor ges has willfully bestowed on the
Ir ish king.TO COLONEL FRANCISCO BORGES, p. ??? Line ?. Manuel Or ibe was the
Ur uguayan caudillo, allied with Rosas, ??? who besieged Montevideo for nine year s
(????-????). Colonel Bor ges began his militar y car eer at the age of sixteen or
seventeen dur ing this siege.?. Bor ges was wounded in two differ ent battles in ????
dur ing the war with Par aguay.?. Ricar do Lo?pez Jor da?n was the Entr e Ri?os caudillo
who laid siege to Par ana? ar ound ????. Colonel Bor ges was sent to r elieve the city.
??. Catr iel, Pampas Indian cacique in the southwest of the Pr o- vince of Buenos
Air es; Mar ti?n Fier r o, the her o of Jose? Her na?ndez' poem. Colonel Bor ges commanded
the fr ontier outpost at Juni?n in the ear ly ????'s.See also note above on "Allusion
to the Death of Colonel Fr an- cisco Bor ges".THE MAK ER, p. ???See Bor ges' comment on
this piece in The Aleph and Other Stor ies, pp. ???-?.A YELLOW ROSE, p. ???
Giambattista Mar ino (????-????), Italian bar oque poet whose avowed pur pose was to
astonish the r eader with far fetched metaphor s and skillfully melodious ver ses. His
contempor ar y wor shiper s con- sider ed him super ior to Dante and Homer .The ver ses ar e
fr om L'Adone, ?,???, lines ?-?: Por por a de' giar din, pompa de' pr ati,Gemma di
pr imaver a, occhio d' apr ile,EVERYTHING AND NOTHING, p. ???Beginning of second
sentence in last par agr aph, cf. Job XXXVIII: ?, "Then the Lor d answer ed Job out of
the whir lwind, and said,".BORGES AND MYSELF, p. ??? See the author 's comment in The
Aleph and Other Stor ies, pp. ???-?. ??? CONTENTS OF THE PRINCIPAL EDITIONS OF
BORGES' POETRY A. FERVOR DE BUENOS AIRESFer vor de Buenos Air es. Pr ivately pr inted
by the author . Buenos Air es, ????. Cover woodcut by Nor ah Bor ges. ?3/8 X ?1/4
inches. ?? pages, unnumber ed. Appr oximately ??? copies. A quien leyer e
[pr eface] ??. La vuelta ?. Las calles?. La Recoleta?. Calle desconocida ?. El
Jar di?n Bota?nico ?. Mu?sica patr ia??. La guitar r a ??. Resplandor ??. Amanecer ??.
El Sur [I] ??. Car nicer i?a ?. La plaza San Mar ti?n ??. Alquimia ?. El tr uco?.
Final de an?o ?. Ciudad??. Hallazgo??. Un patio??. Bar r io r econquistado??.
Vanilocuencia??. Villa Ur quiza??. Sala vaci?a??. Inscr ipcio?n sepulcr al [I] ??.
Rosas??. Ar r abal??. Remor dimiento por cual-quier defuncio?n ??. Jar di?n??.
Inscr ipcio?n en cualquier sepulcr o??. Dictamen??. Benar e?s??. Alba desdibujada??.
Juder i?a??. Ausencia??. Llaneza??. Llamar ada??. Caminata??. La noche de San
Juan ??. Sa?bados??. Cer cani?as ??. Can?a de a?mbar ??. Inscr ipcio?n sepulcr al [II]
??. Tr ofeo ??. For jadur a??. Atar decer es??. Campos atar decidos ??. Despedida ??? B.
LUNA DE ENFRENTELuna de enfr ente. Pr oa. Buenos Air es, ????. Five unsigned woodcut
decor ations by Nor ah Bor ges. ??1/2 X ?5/8 inches. ?? pages. ??? copies,
number ed ?-???. This is the scar cest of all the author 's books. al tal vez
lector [pr eface] calle con almace?n r osao??. el gener al Quir oga va en ??. u?ltimo
sol en Villa Or tu?zar ??.la vuelta a Buenos Air es dulcia linquimus ar vaa la calle
Ser r anocasi Juicio Finalcasas como a?ngeles mi vida enter a ??.??. al hor izonte de
un subur bio??. ??. los llanos??. antelacio?n de amor ??. dualida? en una despedida
??.??.??.??. ??. ??.coche al muer eMontevideo ??.??.par a una calle del Oeste
patr iassolear espor los viales de Ni^mes el an?o cuar entaen Villa Alvear ver sos de
cator ce ??. jactancia de quietud ??. a Rafael Cansinos-Assens ??. ??.singladur a??.
??. apuntamiento de Dakar ??. ??. la pr omisio?n en alta mar ??. tar de cualquier a
??. C. CUADERNO SAN MARTINCuader no San Mar ti?n. Pr oa. Buenos Air es, ????.
Fr ontispiece pencil dr awing of the author by Silvina Ocampo. ?1/2 X ?1/4 inches. ??
pages. ??? copies as follows: ??? copies on feather weight paper , number ed ?-???; ??
copies on r ag paper , number ed I-X; ?? copies on pur e laid r ag paper , letter ed
[Spanish alphabet] A to Q (not for sale). ??. ??.La fundacio?n mitolo?gica de
Buenos Air es Ar r abal en que pesa el campo??. Elegi?a de los Por tones??. Isidor o
Acevedo??. A la doctr ina de pasio?n de tu voz??. Muer tes de Buenos Air es ??. A
Fr ancisco Lo?pez Mer ino ??. Bar r io Nor te??. El Paseo de JulioAnotaciones [notes]
??.Fluencia natur al del r ecuer do ??.La noche que en el Sur lo velar on ??? D.
POEMAS [????-????] Poemas [????-????] . Losada. Buenos Air es, ????. Cover dr awing by
A. Rossi. ?1/4 X ? inches. ??? pages. ?,??? copies.Repr inted fr om A. Fer vor de
Buenos Air es: (a) a r evised ver sion of the last par agr aph only of "A quien leyer e"
(see note on p. ???); (b) all but eight of the poems. Rejected ar e
Nos. ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??. Retitled ar e No. ?? to "Ultimo r esplandor " and
No. ?? to "Juden- gasse". Revised texts: pr eface and all the poems. Extent of
r evisions: minor (affecting a tenth or less lines), Nos. ??, ??,
??, ??; moder ate (affecting mor e than a tenth and less than a thir d lines),
Nos. ?, ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??; extensive (affecting a thir d or
mor e lines), Nos. ?, ?, ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ??.Repr inted fr om B. Luna de enfr ente: all but eight of the poems.
Rejected ar e the pr eface and Nos. ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??. Retitled ar e
No. ?? to "Calle con almace?n r osado", No. ?? to "Amor osa anticipa- cio?n", and No.
?? to "Dakar ". Revised typogr aphy: (a) titles no longer pr inted in lower -case
letter s; (b) lines of ver se no longer all capital- ized. Revised texts: all the
poems. Extent of r evisions (not counting the typogr aphical r evision and the
cor r ection of a lar ge number of typo- gr aphical er r or s, including pr inter 's
substitution--appar ently he had r un out of type--of the letter "I" for "Y"): minor ,
Nos. ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??; moder ate, Nos. ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??;
extensive, Nos. ??, ??, ??, ??.Repr inted fr om C. Cuader no San Mar ti?n: (a) all the
poems but one; (b) notes. Identical with pr evious pr inting: No. ??. Rejected:
No. ??. Revised texts: all the poems except No. ?? and, ver y slightly, the notes.
Extent of the r evisions (not counting matter s of pr inter 's styling and the
cor r ection of inconsistent indenting of fir st lines in stanzas): minor ,
Nos. ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??; moder ate, No. ??.Added to Luna de enfr ente
section, following, r espectively, Nos. ?? and ??: ??? ??. Al cor onel Fr ancisco
Bor ges ??. Manuscr ito hallado en un (????-????) libr o de Joseph Conr adAdded in new
final section, Otr os poemas:??. Pr ose poems for I.J. ??. Insomnio??. La noche ci?
clicaE. POEMAS ????-??????. Del infier no y del cielo ??. Poema conjetur alNotas
[notes] Poemas ????-????. Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????. ?3/8 X ? inches. ???
pages. ?,??? copies.
??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,??, ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??.
Revised texts: (a) minor , Nos. ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??; moder ate, Nos. ??, ??;
extensive, Nos. ??, ??; (b) slight r evisions in both sets of notes, except that one
long note of ?1/2 pages dr opped fr om second set. Revised or der of texts: No. ?
follows ??, ?? follows ?, ?? follows newly or der ed ??. Added: (a) epigr aph fr om
Rober t Louis Stevenson; (b) to final section, r etitled Otr as composiciones: ??.
Poema del cuar to elemento ??. Pa?gina par a r ecor dar al ??. A un poeta menor de la
cor onel Sua?r ez, vencedor Antologi?a en Juni?nF. POEMAS ????-??????. Mateo XXV, ??
Poemas ????-????. Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????, ?3/8 X ? inches. ??? pages, ?,???
copies. Repr inted fr om E. Poemas ????-????: pr eface to Fer vor and all but one of
the poems. Rejected: (a) No. ??; (b) all the notes. Identical with pr evious
pr inting: Nos. ?, ?,* ?, ??,* ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,* ??, ??, ??, * Except for
obvious typogr aphical er r or (s). Repr inted fr om D. Poemas [????-????] : all texts
except for one poem. Rejected: No. ??. Retitled: No. ?? to "Two English Poems".
Identical with pr evious pr inting: (a) pr eface to Fer vor ; (b)
Nos. ?, ?, ?, ?, ?, ??, ???
??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,* ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,* ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ??,* ??,* ??,* ??, ??, ??, ??,* ??,* ??, ??,* ??, ??, ??,* ??.
Revised texts: (a) pr eface to Fer vor ; (b) minor , Nos. ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??; moder ate,
Nos. ?, ?, ??. Added to Otr as composiciones:??. Una br u?jula??. Una llave en Salo?
nica ??. Un poeta del siglo XIII ??. Un soldado de Ur bina???. Li?mites [I] ???.
Baltasar Gr acian ???. Un sajo?n (a.d. ???) ???. El Golem???. El tango G. Fr om EL
HACEDOREl hacedor . Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????. ?3/8 X ? inches. ??? pages. ?,???
copies. A Leopoldo Lugones [pr ef-ace] ???. Poema de los dones ???. El r eloj de
ar ena???. Ajedr ez???. Los espejos???. Elvir a de Alvear ???. Susana Soca???. La luna
???. La lluvia???. A la efigie de un capita?n(????-??)???. In memor iam A. R. ???.
LosBor ges???. A Luis de Camoens ???. Mil novecientos veinti-tantos ???. Oda
compuesta en ???? ???. Ar iosto y los a?r abes ???. A un viejo poeta???. El otr o
tigr e???. Blind Pew???. Alusio?n a una sombr a de milgr ama?tica anglosajona ???.
Lucas, XXIII???. Adr ogue????. Ar te poe?tica???. Cuar teta????. Li?mites [II] ????. El
poeta declar a sunombr adi?a????. El enemigo gener oso? ???. Le r egr et d'He?r aclite?
de los eje?r citos de Cr omwell ochocientos noventa y tantos ???. Alusio?n a la
muer te del cor onel Fr ancisco Bor ges ???. Al iniciar el estudio de la * Except for
obvious typogr aphical er r or (s). ? Gr ouped under the heading Museo. ??? H. OBRA
POETICA ????-????Obr a poe?tica ????-????. Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????. Fr ontispiece
dr awing of the author by He?ctor Basaldu?a; eight color illustr ations, two each, by
He?ctor Basaldu?a, Nor ah Bor ges, Hor acio Butler , and Rau?l Soldi. ?1/8 X ?7/8
inches. ??? pages. ?,??? copies.Repr inted fr om F. Poemas ????-????: all texts but
one of the poems. Rejected: No. ??. Retitled: No. ?? to "Sur " and No. ?? to "Funda-
cio?n mi?tica de Buenos Air es". Identical with pr evious pr inting (neither her e nor
in the following list of r evisions is note made of those dr opped accents in single-
syllable wor ds adopted in confor mity with new Spanish-language r ules): (a) pr eface
to Fer vor ; (b)
Nos. ?,* ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,
* ??,* ??, ??,* ??,* ??,* ??, ??, ??,* ??,? ??, ??, ??, ??, ???. Revised texts:
minor ,
Nos. ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ???, ???, ???, ???; moder ate, Nos. ?, ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??; extensive, Nos. ??, ??. Revised or der
of texts: No. ?? follows ??. Repr inted fr om G. El hacedor : "A Leopoldo Lugones" and
all ver se texts. Identical with pr evious pr inting:
Nos. ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???, ?
??, ???, ???,* ???. Revised texts: (a) "A Leopoldo Lugones" (ver y slight); (b)
minor , Nos. ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???; moder ate, Nos. ???, ???, ???. Added
to opening of volume, following epigr aph: Pr o?logo [for ewor d] Added to Otr as
composiciones, now r etitled El otr o, el mismo, and fol- lowing No. ???: ???. El
otr o???. Una r osa y Milton ???. Lector es???. Juan, I, ?? [I] ???. El desper tar ???.
Buenos Air es [I] ???. A quien ya no es joven ???. Alexander Selkir k * Except for
obvious typogr aphical er r or (s) or cor r ection of er r or (s) fr om pr evious pr inting.?
Title slightly r evised to r ead "Mateo, XXV, ??". ??? ???. Odisea, libr o vige?
simo ???. A un poeta sajo?n [I] ter cer o ???. Hengest cyning ???. El???. Milonga de
dos her manos* ???. ?Do?nde se habr a?n ido?* ???. Sar miento???. A un poeta menor
de ???????. E. A. P. (????-??) ???. Ever ness???. Ewigkeit???. Edipo y el
enigma ???. Spinoza ???. Texas ???. Espan?a ???. Composicio?n escr ita en un ???.
Elegi?a ejemplar de la Gesta deBeowulf ???. Fr agmento???. Adam Cast For th ???. A
una moneda ???. Otr o poema de los dones Revised or der of texts: "A Leopoldo
Lugones" pr efaces El otr o, el mis- mo section; Nos. ???, ???, ???, ???, ??? follow
No. ??? in a new final section, Museo.I. PARA LAS SEIS CUERDASPar a las seis
cuer das. Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????. Eleven illustr ations by He?ctor Basaldu?a. ??
1/4 X ??1/4 inches. ?? pages, unnumber ed. ?,??? copies as follows: ?,??? or dinar y
copies; ?? copies on cr eam-white paper , number ed I-XV, with a set of illustr ations
and an or iginal by the ar tist on white paper .Repr inted fr om H. Obr a poe?
tica ????-????: Nos. ???, ???, ???. Re- vised texts: minor , Nos. ???, ???;
moder ate, No. ???.The volume opens with a [for ewor d] and, following No. ???, these
new texts: ???. Milonga de Jacinto Chiclana ???. Milonga de don Nicanor Par edes???.
Un cuchillo en el Nor te ???. El Ti?ter e ???. Alguien le dice al tango ???. Milonga
de los mor enos ???. Milonga par a los or ientales ???. Los compadr itos muer tos *
Gr ouped under the heading "Dos letr as de milonga". ??? J. OBRA POETICA ????-????
Obr a poe?tica ????-????. Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????. ?3/8 X ? inches. ???
pages. ?,??? copies.Repr inted fr om H. Obr a poe?tica ????-????: all texts but one of
the poems. Rejected: No. ??. Retitled: No. ??? to "A un poeta menor de ????" and
No. ??? to "Edgar Allan Poe". Identical with pr evious pr int- ing: (a) for ewor d; (b)
pr eface to Fer vor ; (c)
Nos. ?, ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ?
?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,* ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??,
??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,
???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???
, ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,
???, ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???; (d) "A Leopoldo
Lugones". Revised texts: minor ,
Nos. ?, ?, ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???; moder ate, Nos. ?, ??.
Repr inted fr om I. Par a las seis cuer das: all texts. Identical with pr evious
pr inting: (a) for ewor d; (b) Nos. ???,* ???, ???. Revised texts: minor ,
Nos. ???, ???, ???, ???; moder ate, No. ???.Added to El otr o, el mismo, following
No. ???: ???. A una espada en Yor kAdded following No. ???: ???. Snor r i Stur luson
(????- ????)???. A Car los XII???. Emanuel Swedenbor g???. Jonathan Edwar ds (????-
????) ???. Emer son Added following No. ???: ???. Camden, ???? ???. Los enigmas ???.
Par is, ???? ???. El instante ???. Rafael Cansinos-Assens ???. Alvino * Except for
obvious typogr aphical er r or (s). ??? ???. Soneto del vino ???.
A quien esta? leye?ndome ???. ???????. El hambr e ???. El for aster o ???. El
alquimista ???. Alguien Added following No. ???: ???. Oda escr ita en ???? ???. Li?
neas que pude haber escr ito y per dido hacia ???? Added to Par a las seis cuer das,
following No. ???: ???. Milonga de Albor noz Revised or der of texts: No. ??? follows
???, ??? follows ???; Nos. ??? and ???, together with Nos. ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,
???, ???, ??? for m a new section (with its own for ewor d), Par a las seis cuer das,
which follows El otr o, el mismo and pr ecedes Museo.K . OBRA POETICA ????-???? Obr a
poe?tica ????-????. Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????. ?3/8 X ? inches. ??? pages. ?,???
copies. Repr inted fr om J. Obr a poe?tica ????-????: all texts but thr ee of the
poems. Rejected: Nos. ??, ??, ??. Identical with pr evious pr inting (not counting
pr inter 's er r or s committed in the pr ocess of offsetting fr om the pr evious edition
or similar er r or s cor r ected fr om pr evious edi- tion): all texts but for one poem.
Revised text: moder ate, No. ??. Added to El otr o, el mismo, following No. ???: ???.
El suen?o ???. Buenos Air es [II] ???. Juni?n???. Un soldado de Lee (????) ???. El
mar ???. Una man?ana de ???????.A un poeta sajo?n [II] ???.Al hijoEl laber into ???.
l. Fr om ELOGIO DE LA SOMBRAElogio de la sombr a. Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????.
Endpaper and fr ontispiece color illustr ations by He?ctor Basaldu?a. ?1/4 X ?1/8
inches.??? ??? pages. ?,??? copies, the fir st of which, number ed I and signed by
the author , bear s the or iginal illustr ations. [pr eface] ???. Isr ael ???. Juan, I,??
[II] ???. Junio, ???? ???. Her a?clito ???. El guar dia?n de los libr os ???.
Cambr idge???. Elsa???. New England, ???? ???. James Joyce???. The Unending
Gift ???. Laber into???. Mayo ??, ???????. Ricar do Gu?ir aldes ???. A cier ta
sombr a, ???? ???. Las cosas???. Ruba?iya?t???. A Isr ael ???. Los gauchos ???.
Acevedo ???. Milonga de Manuel Flor es ???. Milonga de Calandr ia ???. Invocacio?n a
Joyce???. Isr ael, ???????. Dos ver siones de "Ritter ,Tod und Teufel"???. Buenos
Air es [III] ???. Fr agmentos de un evan-gelio apo?cr ifo ???. Un lector ???. Elogio de
la sombr a Included fr om El otr o, el misino section of K . Obr a poe?tica ????-????,
following No. ???: No. ???. M. FERVOR DE BUENOS AIRESFer vor de Buenos Air es.
Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????. Endpaper and color fr ontispiece illustr ation by Nor ah
Bor ges. ?1/4 X ?1/8 inches. ??? pages. ?,??? copies, the fir st of which, number ed I
and signed by the author , bear s the or iginal illustr ations.Repr inted fr om Fer vor de
Buenos Air es section of K . Obr a poe?tica ????-????: (a) "A quien leyer e"; (b) all
but thr ee of the poems. Re- jected: Nos. ?, ??, ??. Retitled: No. ?? to
"After glow". Identical withpr evious pr inting: (a) "A quien leyer e" and (b) No. ??.
Revised texts: minor , Nos. ?, ??, ??, ??; moder ate,
Nos. ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??; extensive (affecting fr om one-thir d to two-
thir ds lines), Nos. ?, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??; r ewr itten (affecting
two-thir ds or mor e lines), Nos. ?, ?, ?, ?, ??, ??, ??. Revised or der of texts: No.
? follows ??, ?? follows ?, ?? follows newly or der ed ?, ?? follows ??.??? Added to
opening and close of volume, r espectively: [pr eface] Notas [notes] Added following
Nos. ? and ??, r espectively: ???. El Sur [II] ???. La r osa Included fr om El otr o,
el mismo section of K . Obr a poe?tica ????-????, following No. ??: No. ???.N. LUNA
DE ENFRENTE and CUADERNO SAN MARTINLuna de enfr ente y Cuader no San Mar ti?n. Emece?.
Buenos Air es, ????. Endpaper and color fr ontispiece illustr ation by Juan Eichler . ?
1/4 X 71/8 inches. ??? pages. ?,??? copies, the fir st of which, num- ber ed I and
signed by the author , bear s the or iginal illustr ations. Repr inted fr om Luna de
enfr ente and Cuader no San Mar ti?n sections of K . Obr a poe?tica ????-????: all but
one of the poems. Rejected: No. ??. Retitled: No. ?? to "Una despedida". Identical
with pr evious pr inting: Nos. ??, ??,* ??, ??,* ??.* Revised texts: minor ,
Nos. ??, ??, ??, ??,??, ??,* ??,* ??*; moder ate,
Nos. ??, ??,* ??, ??, ??,* ??,* ??; extensive, Nos. ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??;
r ewr itten, No. ??. Added to opening of volume:A Leonor Acevedo de [pr eface] Bor ges
[dedication] O. EL OTRO, EL MISMO El otr o, el mismo. Emece?. Buenos Air es, ????.
Endpaper and fr ontis- piece color illustr ations by Rau?l Soldi. ?1/8 X ?
inches. ??? pages. ?,??? copies, the fir st of which, number ed I and signed by the
author , bear s the or iginal illustr ations. Repr inted fr om El otr o, el mismo, Par a
las seis cuer das, and Museo sections of K . Obr a poe?tica ????-????: (a) "A Leopoldo
Lugones"; (b) for ewor d to Par a las seis cuer das; and (c) all but thr ee of the
poems. Rejected: No. ???. Tr ansfer r ed to other volumes: No. ??? to M. Fer vor *
Except for obvious typogr aphical er r or (s) or cor r ection of er r or (s) fr om pr evious
pr inting. ??? de Buenos Air es and No. ??? to L. Elogio de la sombr a. Retitled: No.
??? to "A una espada en Yor kminster ". Title cor r ected: No. ???, "Alu- sio?n a la
muer te del cor onel Fr ancisco Bor ges (????-??)". Identical with pr evious pr inting:
(a) for ewor d to Par a las seis cuer das; (b)
Nos. ??, ??,* ??,* ??, ??, ??,* ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ???,* ???,* ???,* ???,* ???,*
???, ???, ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???,
???, ???,* ???,* ???, ???,* ???,* ???,* ???, ???,* ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,
???, ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???, ???,
???,* ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???, ???,* ???,
???,* ???, ???, ???,* ???,* ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???,*
???, ???, ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???,*
???, ???,* ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???. Revised texts: (a) "A Leopoldo
Lugones" (slight); (b) minor , Nos. ??,* ??,* ???,* ???, ???, ???, ???,* ???, ???.
Added to opening of volume:[pr eface] Added, following No. ???: ???. El pun?al*
Except for obvious typogr aphical er r or (s) or cor r ection of er r or (s) fr om pr evious
pr inting. ??? INDEX OF SPANISH AND ENGLISH TITLES A Car los XII, ??? Adam Cast
For th, ???Adam Cast For th, ???A Fr ancisco Lo?pez Mer ino, ??After glow, ??
Ajedr ez, ???Alba desdibujada, ???Al cor onel Fr ancisco Bor ges(????-????), ???
Alguien, ???Al iniciar el estudio de la gr ama?ticaanglosajona, ???Allusion to a
Shadow of the Nineties,???Allusion to the Death of ColonelFr ancisco Bor ges
(????-????), ??? Along the Byways of Ni^mes, ??? Alusio?n a la muer te del cor onel
Fr ancisco Bor ges (????-??), ??? Alusio?n a una sombr a de milochocientos noventa y
tantos, ??? Amanecer , ??A Mor ning of ????, ???Amor osa anticipacio?n, ??Another Poem
of Gifts, ??? Anticipation of Love, ??A Page to Commemor ate ColonelSua?r ez, Victor
at Juni?n, ???A Poet of the Thir teenth Centur y,???A quien esta? leye?ndome, ???A
quien ya no es joven, ???A Rafael Cansinos-Assens, ??? A Rose and Milton, ???Ar s
Poetica, ???Ar te poe?tica, ??? A Saxon (a.d. ???), ???A Soldier of Ur bina, ???A
Soldier Under Lee (????), ??? At the Butcher 's, ??A una moneda, ???A un poeta menor
de la Antologi?a, ?? A un poeta menor de ????, ???A un poeta sajo?n [I] , ???A un
poeta sajo?n [II] , ???A Yellow Rose, ???Blur r ed Dawn, ??? Bor ges and Myself, ???
Bor ges y yo, ???Calle desconocida, ?Camden, ????, ???Camden ????, ??? Car nicer i?
a, ??Car ved on a Tombstone, ??? Casas como a?ngeles, ??Chess, ???Compass, ???
Composicio?n escr ita en un ejemplar de laGesta de Beowulf, ??? Conjectur al Poem, ??
Cuar teta, ???Dakar , ??Dakar , ??Daybr eak, ??Deaths of Buenos Air es, ?? Deathwatch on
the Southside, ?? Despedida, ??Dulcia Linquimus Ar va, ?? Dulcia Linquimus Ar va, ??
??? Edgar Allan Poe, ???Edgar Allan Poe, ???Edipo y el enigma, ???El enemigo
gener oso, ???El gener al Quir oga va en coche almuer e, ??El Golem, ???El hacedor , ???
El laber into, ???El mar , ???El otr o tigr e, ???El poeta declar a su nombr adi?a, ???El
pun?al, ???El Sur , ???El testigo, ???Elvir a de Alvear , ???Elvir a de Alvear , ???
Emanuel Swedenbor g, ???Emanuel Swedenbor g, ??? Embar king on the Study of Anglo-
Saxon Gr ammar , ??? Emer son, ???Emer son, ???Empty Dr awing Room, ?? Ever ness, ???
Ever ness, ???Ever ything and Nothing, ??? Ever ything and Nothing, ??? Ewigkeit, ???
Ewigkeit, ???Fr agment, ???Fr agmento, ???Fundacio?n mi?tica de Buenos Air es, ??
Gener al Quir oga Rides to His Death in a Car r iage, ??Hengest cyning, ??? Hengest
Cyning, ??? Houses Like Angels, ??Inscr ipcio?n en cualquier sepulcr o, ??
Inscr ipcio?n sepulcr al [I] , ? Inscr ipcio?n sepulcr al [II] , ??? Inscr iption on Any
Tomb, ?? Isidor o Acevedo, ??Isidor o Acevedo, ?? Jonathan Edwar ds (????-????), ???
Jonathan Edwar ds (????-????), ??? Juni?n, ???Juni?n, ??? La lluvia, ???La noche ci?
clica, ??La noche que en el Sur lo velar on, ?? La Recoleta, ?La r osa, ???Le Regr et
d'He?r aclite, ???Le Regr et d'He?r aclite, ??? Li?mites [I] , ???Li?mites [II] , ???
Limits, ???Limits (or Good-byes), ??? Li?neas que pude haber escr ito yper dido hacia
????, ???Lines I Might Have Wr itten and LostAr ound ????, ??? Llaneza, ??Los Bor ges,
???Los enigmas, ??? Lucas, XXIII, ??? Luke XXIII, ???Manuscr ipt Found in a Book of
Joseph Conr ad, ??Manuscr ito hallado en un libr o de Joseph Conr ad, ??Mateo, XXV, ??,
??? ??? Matthew XXV:??, ???Milonga de Albor noz, ???Milonga de dos her manos, ???
Milonga of Albor noz, ??? Milonga of the Two Br other s, ??? Mi vida enter a, ??
Montevideo, ?? Montevideo, ??Muer tes de Buenos Air es, ?? My Whole Life, ??Oda
escr ita en ????, ???Ode Wr itten in ????, ???Odisea, libr o vige?simo ter cer o, ???
Odyssey, Book Twenty-thr ee, ??? Oedipus and the Riddle, ???Otr o poema de los dones,
???Pa?gina par a r ecor dar al cor onel Sua?r ez, vencedor en Juni?n, ???Par i?
s, ????, ???Par is ????, ???Par ting, ??Patio, ??Plainness, ??Poema conjetur al, ??
Poema de los dones, ???Poem of the Gifts, ???Poem Wr itten in a Copy of Beowulf,???
Por los viales de
Ni^mes, ???Quatr ain, ???Rafael Cansinos-Assens, ??? Rafael Cansinos-Assens, ???
Rain, ???Remor dimiento por cualquier defuncio?n, ??Remor se for Any Death, ??
Rosas, ?? Rosas, ?? Rose, ???Sala vaci?a, ??Sepulchr al Inscr iption, ?Snor r i
Stur luson (????-????), ??? Snor r i Stur luson (????-????), ??? Someone, ???
Spinoza, ???Spinoza, ???Sunset Over Villa Or tu?zar , ?? Susana Soca, ???Susana Soca,
???Texas, ??? Texas, ???The Bor ges, ???The Cyclical Night, ??The Dagger , ???The
Enigmas, ???The Gener ous Enemy, ???The Golem, ???The Labyr inth, ???The Maker , ???
The Mythical Founding of BuenosAir es, ??The Other Tiger , ???The Poet Tells of His
Fame, ??? The Recoleta, ?The Sea, ???The Southside, ??? The Witness, ???To a
Coin, ???To a Minor Poet of ????, ??? To a Minor Poet of the Gr eekAnthology, ??To a
Saxon Poet [I] , ???To a Saxon Poet [II] , ???To Char les XII of Sweden, ??? ??? Una
br u?jula, ???Una man?ana de ????, ??? Una r osa amar illa, ???Una r osa y Milton, ???
Unknown Str eet, ?Un patio, ??Un poeta del siglo XIII, ??? Un sajo?n (a.d. ???), ???
Un soldado de Lee (????), ??? Un soldado de Ur bina, ??? To Colonel Fr ancisco Bor ges
(????-????), ???To Fr ancisco Lo?pez Mer ino, ?? To My Reader , ???To One No Longer
Young, ??? To Rafael Cansinos-Assens, ??? Two English Poems, ??Ultimo
r esplandor , ??Ultimo sol en Villa Or tu?zar , ?? ???