Here, as on the other extreme of the continent
-- the southernmost frontier -- the infinite
field where the solitary yell dies.
Here too the Indian, the lasso, the bronco.
Here too the secret phoenix that beyond history's
uproars sings to an evening and its imprint
Here too the mystic alphabet of the stars that
today dictates to my quill names the incessant
labyrinth of life refuses to sweep away:
San Jacinto and that other Thermopylae, the Alamo.
Here too, that unknown and anxious and brief thing
that is life.
If you enjoyed this translation, you may also wish to look at the translation of
this poem Mark Strand, poet laureate of the United States from 1990-1991, and other
of Borges's poems in translation. They appear in Jorge Luis Borges, Selected
Poems 1923-1967, a bilingual edition edited by Norman Thomas Di Giovanni and
printed by Dell Publishing.