"Three very ancient faces stay with me:
one is the Ocean, which would talk with Claudius,
another the North, with its unfeeling temper,
savage both at sunrise and at sunset;
the third is Death, that other name we give
to passing time, which wears us all away.
The secular burden of those yesterdays
from history which happened or was dreamed,
oppresses me as personally as guilt.
I think of the proud ship, carrying back
to sea the body of Scyld Sceaving,
who ruled in Denmark, underneath the sky;
I think of the great wolf, whose reins were serpents,
who lent the burning boat the purity
and whiteness of the beautiful dead god;
I think of pirates too, whose human flesh
is scattered through the slime beneath the weight
of waters which were ground for their adventures;
I think of mausoleums which the sailors
saw in the course of Northern odysseys.
I think of my own death, my perfect death,
without a funeral urn, without a tear."

Jorge Luis Borges. Elegy.
@1 year ago with 27 notes
#Borges 

"… There was a room at the rear of the house in which there were three tables, at which sat men like himself, who also cast charity into exile, and he said that he conversed with them, and was confirmed by them day by day, and told that no other theologian was as wise as he. He was smitten by that adoration, but since some of the persons had no face, and others were like dead men, he soon came to abominate and mistrust them. Then he began to write something about charity; but what he wrote on the paper one day, he did not see the next; for this happens to every one there when he commits any thing to paper from the external man only, and not at the same time from the internal, thus from compulsion and not from freedom; it is obliterated of itself… ."

Jorge Luis Borges. A Theologian In Death. Et Cetera. 
@1 year ago with 28 notes
#Borges #Swedenborg 

"

Every single thing becomes a word
in a language that Someone or Something, night and day,
writes down in a never-ending scribble,
which is the history of the world, embracing

Rome, Carthage, you, me, everyone,
my life, which I do not understand, this anguish
of being enigma, accident, and puzzle,
and all the discordant languages of Babel.

Behind each name lies that which has no name.
Today I feel its nameless shadow tremble
in the blue clarity of the compass needle,

whose rule extends as far as the far seas,
something like a clock glimpsed in a dream
or a bird that stirs suddenly in its sleep.

"

Jorge Luis Borges. Compass.
@2 years ago with 261 notes
#Borges 

"… A book that does not contain its counterbook is considered incomplete… ."

Jorge Luis Borges. Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius.
@2 years ago with 49 notes
#Borges 

"… The flattery of posterity is worth very little more than the flattery of one’s contemporaries, which is not worth anything, and can be bought with a pocketful of loose change… ."

Jorge Luis Borges. A Dialogue Between Dead Men. 
@2 years ago with 35 notes
#Borges 

"The night assigns us its magic
task. To unravel the universe,
the infinite ramifications
of effects and causes, all lost
in that bottomless vertigo, time.
Tonight the night wants you to forget
your name, your elders and your blood,
every human word and every tear,
what you would have learned from staying awake,
the illusory point of the geometricians,
the line, the plane, the cube, the pyramid,
the cylinder, the sphere, the sea, the waves,
your cheek on the pillow, the coolness
of the fresh sheet, gardens,
empires, the Caesars and Shakespeare
and the hardest thing of all, what you love.
Oddly enough, a pill can
erase the cosmos and erect chaos."

Jorge Luis Borges. Sleep. 
@2 years ago with 81 notes
#Borges 

"

To look at the river made of time and water
And remember that time is another river,
To know that we are lost like the river
And that faces dissolve like water.

To be aware that waking dreams it is not asleep
While it is another dream, and that the death
That our flesh goes in fear of is that death
Which comes every night and is called sleep.

To see in the day or in the year a symbol
Of the days of man and of his years,
To transmute the outrage of the years
Into a music, a murmur of voices, and a symbol.

To see in death sleep, and in the sunset
A sad gold — such in poetry,
Which is immortal and poor. Poetry
Returns like the dawn and the sunset.

At times in the evenings a face
Looks at us out of the depths of a mirror;
Art should be like that mirror
Which reveals to us our own face.

They say that Ulysses, sated with marvels,
Wept tears of love at the sight of his Ithaca,
Green and humble. Art is that Ithaca
Of green eternity, not of marvels.

It is also like the river with no end
That flows and remains and is the mirror of one same
Inconstant Heraclitus, who is the same
And is another, like the river with no end.

"

Jorge Luis Borges. Ars Poetica. 
@2 years ago with 30 notes
#Borges #ta panta rhei #Heraclitus 

"You are invulnerable. Have they not granted you,
those powers that preordain your destiny,
the certainty of dust? Is not your time
as irreversible as that same river
where Heraclitus, mirrored, saw the symbol
of fleeting life? A marble slab awaits you
which you will not read — on it, already written,
the date, the city, and the epitaph.
Other men too are only dreams of time,
not indestructible bronze or burnished gold;
the universe is, like you, a Proteus.
Dark, you will enter the darkness that awaits you,
doomed to the limits of your traveled time.
Know that in some sense you are already dead."

Jorge Luis Borges. To Whoever Is Reading Me. 
@2 years ago with 22 notes
#Borges 

"My doing nothing as I walk the streets lives on
and is released into the night’s multiplicity.
The night is a long and lonely celebration.
In my secret heart I justify and glorify myself.
I have witnessed the world; I have confessed to the
strangeness of the world.
I’ve sung the eternal: the bright returning moon and the faces craved by love.
I’ve recorded in poems the city that surrounds me
and the outlying neighborhoods tearing themselves apart.
I’ve said astonishment where others said only custom.
Faced with the song of the tepid, I ignited my voice in sunsets.
I’ve exalted and sung my blood’s ancestors and the ancestors of my dreams.
I have been and I am.
I’ve fixed my feelings into durable words
when they could have been spent on tenderness.
The memory of an old infamy returns to my heart.
Like a dead horse flung up on the beach by the tide, it returns
to my heart.
And yet, the streets and the moon are still at my side.
Water keeps flowing freely in my mouth and poems don’t
deny me their music.
I feel the terror of beauty; who will dare condemn me when
this great moon of my solitude forgives me?"

Jorge Luis Borges. Almost A Last Judgement. 
@1 year ago with 43 notes
#Borges 

"… “Thinking, meditating, imagining,” he also wrote me, “are not anomalous acts - they are the normal respiration of the intelligence. To glorify the occasional exercise of that function, to treasure beyond price ancient and foreign thoughts, to recall with incredulous awe what some doctor universalis thought is to confess our own languor, or our own barbarie. Every man should be capable of all ideas, and I believe that in the future he shall be.” …"

Jorge Luis Borges. Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote.
@1 year ago with 40 notes
#Borges 

"… a book is more than a verbal structure, or a series of verbal structures; a book is the dialogue with the reader, and the peculiar accent he gives to its voice, and the changing and durable images it leaves in his memory. That dialogue is infinite…"

Jorge Luis Borges. For Bernard Shaw. Other Inquisitions.
@2 years ago with 48 notes
#Borges 

"I dream the sea, that sea, surrounding me,
And from the dream I’m rescued by the bells
Of God, which bless and sanctify the mornings
Of these domesticated English fields.
Five years I suffered, looking at eternal
Images of infinity and solitude,
Which have become that story I repeat
Now, like an obsession, in the pubs.
God has returned me to the world of men,
To mirrors and doors and numbers and names,
And I am no longer he who eternally
Looked at the sea and its deep barren plain.
But now what shall I do so it may find
That I am here, and safe, among my kind?"

Jorge Luis Borges. Alexander Selkirk.
@2 years ago with 11 notes
#Borges 

"My doing nothing as I walk the streets lives on
and is released into the night’s multiplicity.
The night is a long and lonely celebration.
In my secret heart I justify and glorify myself.
I have witnessed the world; I have confessed to the
strangeness of the world.
I’ve sung the eternal: the bright returning moon and the faces
craved by love.
I’ve recorded poems in the city that surrounds me
and the outlying neighborhoods tearing themselves apart.
I’ve said astonishment where others said only custom.
Faced with the song of the tepid, I ignited my voice in sunsets.
I’ve exalted and sung my blood’s ancestors and the ancestors
of my dreams.
I have been and I am.
I’ve fixed my feelings into durable words
when they could have been spent on tenderness.
The memory of an old infamy returns to my heart.
Like a dead horse flung up on the beach by the tide, it returns
to my heart.
And yet, the streets and the moon are still at my side.
Water keeps flowing freely in my mouth and poems don’t
deny me their music.
I feel the terror of beauty; who will dare condemn me when
this great moon of my solitude forgives me?"

Jorge Luis Borges. Almost A Last Judgement. 
@2 years ago with 33 notes
#Borges 

"

Daylight leaks in, and sluggishly I surface
from my own dreams into the common dream
and things assume again their proper places
and their accustomed shapes. Into this present
the Past intrudes, in all its dizzying range—
the centuries-old habits of migration
in birds and men, the armies in their legions
all fallen to the sword, and Rome and Carthage.

The trappings of my day also come back:
my voice, my face, my nervousness, my luck.
If only Death, that other waking-up,
would grant me a time free of all memory
of my own name and all that I have been!
If only morning meant oblivion!

"

Jorge Luis Borges. Waking Up. 
@2 years ago with 36 notes
#Borges 

"… Pater wrote that all the arts aspire to the condition of music, perhaps because in music meaning is form, since we are not able to recount a melody in the way we can recount the outline of a short story. If we accept this statement, poetry would be a hybrid art — the subjection of a set of abstract symbols which is language to musical ends. Dictionaries are to blame for this erroneous concept. It is often forgotten that they are artificial repositories, put together well after the languages they define. The roots of language are irrational and of a magical nature. The Dane who pronounced the name of Thor or the Saxon who uttered the name of Thunor did not know whether these words represented the god of thunder or the rumble that is heard after the lightning flash. Poetry wants to return to that ancient magic. Without fixed rules, it makes its way in a hesitant, daring way, as if moving in darkness. Poetry is a mysterious chess, whose chessboard and whose pieces change as in a dream and over which I shall be gazing after I am dead… ."

Jorge Luis Borges. Prologue. The Self and the Other. 
@2 years ago with 16 notes
#Borges 
"Three very ancient faces stay with me:
one is the Ocean, which would talk with Claudius,
another the North, with its unfeeling temper,
savage both at sunrise and at sunset;
the third is Death, that other name we give
to passing time, which wears us all away.
The secular burden of those yesterdays
from history which happened or was dreamed,
oppresses me as personally as guilt.
I think of the proud ship, carrying back
to sea the body of Scyld Sceaving,
who ruled in Denmark, underneath the sky;
I think of the great wolf, whose reins were serpents,
who lent the burning boat the purity
and whiteness of the beautiful dead god;
I think of pirates too, whose human flesh
is scattered through the slime beneath the weight
of waters which were ground for their adventures;
I think of mausoleums which the sailors
saw in the course of Northern odysseys.
I think of my own death, my perfect death,
without a funeral urn, without a tear."
Jorge Luis Borges. Elegy.
1 year ago
#Borges 
"My doing nothing as I walk the streets lives on
and is released into the night’s multiplicity.
The night is a long and lonely celebration.
In my secret heart I justify and glorify myself.
I have witnessed the world; I have confessed to the
strangeness of the world.
I’ve sung the eternal: the bright returning moon and the faces craved by love.
I’ve recorded in poems the city that surrounds me
and the outlying neighborhoods tearing themselves apart.
I’ve said astonishment where others said only custom.
Faced with the song of the tepid, I ignited my voice in sunsets.
I’ve exalted and sung my blood’s ancestors and the ancestors of my dreams.
I have been and I am.
I’ve fixed my feelings into durable words
when they could have been spent on tenderness.
The memory of an old infamy returns to my heart.
Like a dead horse flung up on the beach by the tide, it returns
to my heart.
And yet, the streets and the moon are still at my side.
Water keeps flowing freely in my mouth and poems don’t
deny me their music.
I feel the terror of beauty; who will dare condemn me when
this great moon of my solitude forgives me?"
Jorge Luis Borges. Almost A Last Judgement. 
1 year ago
#Borges 
"… There was a room at the rear of the house in which there were three tables, at which sat men like himself, who also cast charity into exile, and he said that he conversed with them, and was confirmed by them day by day, and told that no other theologian was as wise as he. He was smitten by that adoration, but since some of the persons had no face, and others were like dead men, he soon came to abominate and mistrust them. Then he began to write something about charity; but what he wrote on the paper one day, he did not see the next; for this happens to every one there when he commits any thing to paper from the external man only, and not at the same time from the internal, thus from compulsion and not from freedom; it is obliterated of itself… ."
Jorge Luis Borges. A Theologian In Death. Et Cetera. 
1 year ago
#Borges #Swedenborg 
"… “Thinking, meditating, imagining,” he also wrote me, “are not anomalous acts - they are the normal respiration of the intelligence. To glorify the occasional exercise of that function, to treasure beyond price ancient and foreign thoughts, to recall with incredulous awe what some doctor universalis thought is to confess our own languor, or our own barbarie. Every man should be capable of all ideas, and I believe that in the future he shall be.” …"
Jorge Luis Borges. Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote.
1 year ago
#Borges 
"

Every single thing becomes a word
in a language that Someone or Something, night and day,
writes down in a never-ending scribble,
which is the history of the world, embracing

Rome, Carthage, you, me, everyone,
my life, which I do not understand, this anguish
of being enigma, accident, and puzzle,
and all the discordant languages of Babel.

Behind each name lies that which has no name.
Today I feel its nameless shadow tremble
in the blue clarity of the compass needle,

whose rule extends as far as the far seas,
something like a clock glimpsed in a dream
or a bird that stirs suddenly in its sleep.

"
Jorge Luis Borges. Compass.
2 years ago
#Borges 
"… a book is more than a verbal structure, or a series of verbal structures; a book is the dialogue with the reader, and the peculiar accent he gives to its voice, and the changing and durable images it leaves in his memory. That dialogue is infinite…"
Jorge Luis Borges. For Bernard Shaw. Other Inquisitions.
2 years ago
#Borges 
"… A book that does not contain its counterbook is considered incomplete… ."
Jorge Luis Borges. Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius.
2 years ago
#Borges 
"I dream the sea, that sea, surrounding me,
And from the dream I’m rescued by the bells
Of God, which bless and sanctify the mornings
Of these domesticated English fields.
Five years I suffered, looking at eternal
Images of infinity and solitude,
Which have become that story I repeat
Now, like an obsession, in the pubs.
God has returned me to the world of men,
To mirrors and doors and numbers and names,
And I am no longer he who eternally
Looked at the sea and its deep barren plain.
But now what shall I do so it may find
That I am here, and safe, among my kind?"
Jorge Luis Borges. Alexander Selkirk.
2 years ago
#Borges 
"… The flattery of posterity is worth very little more than the flattery of one’s contemporaries, which is not worth anything, and can be bought with a pocketful of loose change… ."
Jorge Luis Borges. A Dialogue Between Dead Men. 
2 years ago
#Borges 
"My doing nothing as I walk the streets lives on
and is released into the night’s multiplicity.
The night is a long and lonely celebration.
In my secret heart I justify and glorify myself.
I have witnessed the world; I have confessed to the
strangeness of the world.
I’ve sung the eternal: the bright returning moon and the faces
craved by love.
I’ve recorded poems in the city that surrounds me
and the outlying neighborhoods tearing themselves apart.
I’ve said astonishment where others said only custom.
Faced with the song of the tepid, I ignited my voice in sunsets.
I’ve exalted and sung my blood’s ancestors and the ancestors
of my dreams.
I have been and I am.
I’ve fixed my feelings into durable words
when they could have been spent on tenderness.
The memory of an old infamy returns to my heart.
Like a dead horse flung up on the beach by the tide, it returns
to my heart.
And yet, the streets and the moon are still at my side.
Water keeps flowing freely in my mouth and poems don’t
deny me their music.
I feel the terror of beauty; who will dare condemn me when
this great moon of my solitude forgives me?"
Jorge Luis Borges. Almost A Last Judgement. 
2 years ago
#Borges 
"The night assigns us its magic
task. To unravel the universe,
the infinite ramifications
of effects and causes, all lost
in that bottomless vertigo, time.
Tonight the night wants you to forget
your name, your elders and your blood,
every human word and every tear,
what you would have learned from staying awake,
the illusory point of the geometricians,
the line, the plane, the cube, the pyramid,
the cylinder, the sphere, the sea, the waves,
your cheek on the pillow, the coolness
of the fresh sheet, gardens,
empires, the Caesars and Shakespeare
and the hardest thing of all, what you love.
Oddly enough, a pill can
erase the cosmos and erect chaos."
Jorge Luis Borges. Sleep. 
2 years ago
#Borges 
"

Daylight leaks in, and sluggishly I surface
from my own dreams into the common dream
and things assume again their proper places
and their accustomed shapes. Into this present
the Past intrudes, in all its dizzying range—
the centuries-old habits of migration
in birds and men, the armies in their legions
all fallen to the sword, and Rome and Carthage.

The trappings of my day also come back:
my voice, my face, my nervousness, my luck.
If only Death, that other waking-up,
would grant me a time free of all memory
of my own name and all that I have been!
If only morning meant oblivion!

"
Jorge Luis Borges. Waking Up. 
2 years ago
#Borges 
"

To look at the river made of time and water
And remember that time is another river,
To know that we are lost like the river
And that faces dissolve like water.

To be aware that waking dreams it is not asleep
While it is another dream, and that the death
That our flesh goes in fear of is that death
Which comes every night and is called sleep.

To see in the day or in the year a symbol
Of the days of man and of his years,
To transmute the outrage of the years
Into a music, a murmur of voices, and a symbol.

To see in death sleep, and in the sunset
A sad gold — such in poetry,
Which is immortal and poor. Poetry
Returns like the dawn and the sunset.

At times in the evenings a face
Looks at us out of the depths of a mirror;
Art should be like that mirror
Which reveals to us our own face.

They say that Ulysses, sated with marvels,
Wept tears of love at the sight of his Ithaca,
Green and humble. Art is that Ithaca
Of green eternity, not of marvels.

It is also like the river with no end
That flows and remains and is the mirror of one same
Inconstant Heraclitus, who is the same
And is another, like the river with no end.

"
Jorge Luis Borges. Ars Poetica. 
2 years ago
#Borges #ta panta rhei #Heraclitus 
"… Pater wrote that all the arts aspire to the condition of music, perhaps because in music meaning is form, since we are not able to recount a melody in the way we can recount the outline of a short story. If we accept this statement, poetry would be a hybrid art — the subjection of a set of abstract symbols which is language to musical ends. Dictionaries are to blame for this erroneous concept. It is often forgotten that they are artificial repositories, put together well after the languages they define. The roots of language are irrational and of a magical nature. The Dane who pronounced the name of Thor or the Saxon who uttered the name of Thunor did not know whether these words represented the god of thunder or the rumble that is heard after the lightning flash. Poetry wants to return to that ancient magic. Without fixed rules, it makes its way in a hesitant, daring way, as if moving in darkness. Poetry is a mysterious chess, whose chessboard and whose pieces change as in a dream and over which I shall be gazing after I am dead… ."
Jorge Luis Borges. Prologue. The Self and the Other. 
2 years ago
#Borges 
"You are invulnerable. Have they not granted you,
those powers that preordain your destiny,
the certainty of dust? Is not your time
as irreversible as that same river
where Heraclitus, mirrored, saw the symbol
of fleeting life? A marble slab awaits you
which you will not read — on it, already written,
the date, the city, and the epitaph.
Other men too are only dreams of time,
not indestructible bronze or burnished gold;
the universe is, like you, a Proteus.
Dark, you will enter the darkness that awaits you,
doomed to the limits of your traveled time.
Know that in some sense you are already dead."
Jorge Luis Borges. To Whoever Is Reading Me. 
2 years ago
#Borges