Jorge Luis Borges

The Art of Poetry

To gaze at a river made of time and water And remember Time is another river. To know we stray like a river and our faces vanish like water. To feel that waking is another dream that dreams of not dreaming and that the death we fear in our bones is the death that every night we call a dream. To see in every day and year a symbol of all the days of man and his years, and convert the outrage of the years into a music, a sound, and a symbol. To see in death a dream, in the sunset a golden sadness--such is poetry, humble and immortal, poetry, returning, like dawn and the sunset. Sometimes at evening there's a face that sees us from the deeps of a mirror. Art must be that sort of mirror, disclosing to each of us his face. They say Ulysses, wearied of wonders, wept with love on seeing Ithaca, humble and green. Art is that Ithaca, a green eternity, not wonders. Art is endless like a river flowing, passing, yet remaining, a mirror to the same inconstant Heraclitus, who is the same and yet another, like the river flowing.

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