August 24, 2011

Too spaced out to think of an apt title.

Today's the 112th birth anniversary of Argentine poet Jorge Luis Borges. Seeing Google's doodle today reminded me of one of his poems, a favourite of mine. Thought I'll share it with you.


Writings of light assault the darkness, more prodigous than meteors.
The tall unknowable city takes over the countryside.
Sure of my life and death, I observe the ambitious
and would like to understand them.
Their day is greedy as a lariat in the air.
Their night is a rest from the rage within steel, quick to attack.
They speak of humanity.
My humanity is in feeling we are all voices of the same poverty.
They speak of homeland.
My homeland is the rythym of a guitar, a few portraits, an old sword,
the willow grove's visible prayer as evening falls.
Time is living me.
More silent than my shadow, I pass through the loftily covetous multitude.
They are indispensible, singular, worthy of tomorrow.
My name is someone and anyone.
I walk slowly, like one who comes from so far away
he doesn't expect to arrive.

I just love that last line... "I walk slowly, like one who comes from so far away, he doesn't expect to arrive." One of the simplest, yet most powerful lines, I've ever read. One of my all-time favourite quotes is also attributed to him- "I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library."


Do head over to Priyanka's wonderful blog and check out the guest-post I wrote. :)


  1. Happy Birthday to Jorge Luis Borges!...... Its another writer's birthday too, Paulo Coelho... who has just brought a novel called Aleph!

    Im sure he named it after Borges's Aleph and the other stories, being an admirer of Borges's writings himself.

    Borges writing is magical realism!
    I never knew you liked him :)

    Read the guest post already.... MINDBLOWING IT IS!

  2. Hey Divya,

    Lovely poem..yup, the last line is kinda poignant :)

    I just hope that the lady librarian at Paradise's single, hot n available.


  3. Funny I had to see this today! I was feeling really down and dejected. I read what Jorge Luis Borges said about the Zahir. I read and re-read like almost a fifty times. And now I came across this post and it felt really nice! :D

  4. My name is someone and anyone.

    Beautiful lines by a great Poet!
    Thanks for sharing it Spiff!

  5. @The Meditating Lion: I haven't read much of Borges. Just a few poems. But whatever I've read, I've really liked it. His language is very simple,that's the best thing I like.
    And thank you! :)

    @R-A-J: I KNEW you would say something like that! :D

    Dawn Zhang: :)

    @Red Handed: I love that line too.. I had in fact named one of my posts that, inspired by this poem.

    @Saru Singhal: Isn't it? :)

  6. Loved the poem.It reminds us that man is a mortal whatever his ambitions are.
    I don't want to know about paradise.What about hell?

  7. Although I'm not much of a poem person, this one's probably one of the best I've ever come across..
    And as for the quote, if you put it the other way, it still holds good :) :)
    "A library is a kind of paradise"

    Happy birthday, Mr. Borges,
    and thank you, Miss Spiff :)

  8. Read about your blog @Priyanka's blog. It's amazing!


  9. Beautiful poem, my homeland is the rhythm of a guitar, a few portraits, an old sword - what a wonderful definition of sorts...

    Hunting down for more from the same:)

  10. That is such an incredible poem.
    *goes to check other poems of his out*
    Just wanted to let you know that I'm another Virgo Malayali :P

  11. @Blue Lotus: Hell.. umm.. uh.. I'll let you know once I get there. :p

    @Sushmit: My pleasure, to spread the love around :).
    And after reading your reply to my comment on Priyanka's blog (about the snakes and sssss-ing), Let me just say "Hi-Faive, fellow PJ-er!!" :P

    @Hamza: Thank you! :)

    @Priyanka: It's the simplicity in the lines that I liked so much.. ANd the fact that he doesn't stick to any conventional form of poetry.

    @cricketfreak: Aha! Another Virgo. :) When's your b'day? :)

  12. :D :D Yep,high faive, Spiff! I love that name, go Calvin! By the way, do drop in and please let me know how you feel about my first couple of posts. Cheers!! :D

  13. Beautiful poem!
    Thanks for sharing.

    I think "I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library." might just become one of my favourite quotes too.

    BTW, I totally want to meet Ruskin Bond before I die or before he dies too :-)
    I adore him!

  14. @Sushmit: Hail Bill Watterson! :)

    @Prathma: Hey, thanks for dropping by! :)
    No one has inspired me to write the way Ruskin Bond has. Most people who I've recommended him to, as ke "What's the big deal about him?". I can't really explain. Maybe it's the simplicity in his words, his power of observation and description.. I love his writing.
    P.S.:- If you ever get to meet him, give me a buzz and I'll tag along. :)

  15. Yep, are you a comicbook fan?? And btw,I'm ploughing through post after post of yours, and I come to realise why your name is one of the most revered ones in blogosphere. Hail Spiff!! :D

  16. Beautiful poem Spiff, thank for this :)

    You're awarded :)


  17. I couldn't afford to NOT follow you because my friend Sushmit has specifically mentioned me to read your blog as according to him its the one of a blog "not to miss out" .. and after reading couple of your posts here, I had to totally concede with him!! awesome!! :)

  18. @Sushmit: Me? Revered?? *is dazed and doesn't know how to react*
    I'm a HUGE comic book fan. :) I still buy Tinkle at home.

    @Soumya: Wow!! Thanks, Soumya! :)

    @Ananya: Thank you! :)
    And P.S:- I love your name. :)

  19. Loved this! I like those last lines to. <3

    Awesome blog :D

  20. Yes.. you, revered, the Bob Kane/Stan Lee of the blog world. If you're a comic book fan too, then it calls for another haii faaive! :D I have a bunch of Tinkles as mementos of train journeys over the years. Nowadays I download all the DC/Marvel stuff from the net. Case in point : I just finished downloading all the 133 issues of Ultimate Spiderman :P :P

  21. @Tay Tay: Thanks! :)

    @Sushmit: Hi-faive! :D I'm not too much of the Marvel-comics fan, actually. I used to read a lot of the Pran comics- Chacha Choudhary etc. Tinkle has been an all-time fav, and Calvin&Hobbes is like a bible. I often quote from it, and the philosophies in it are mind-blowing!

  22. Do the Tinkle comics still feature that intensely annoying bearded man who went to childrens' birthday parties only to rant on about scientific experiments? I always skipped that part :P I forget the name... Anu Club probably.
    As for Calvin, I just got an app which spews random Calvin and Hobbes quotes :D

  23. @Sushmit: Anu Club was a snooze-fest for me too. Zzzzzz. They've discontinued it now.
    Every birthday, I tell my friends to pool in money and buy me the C&H box set, collectors' edition. No one has been generous so far. :(

  24. Spaceman Spiff...big fan of Calvin n now big fan of ur blog :)( actually i believe stupendous man as my Calvin avataar )
    i read ur blog... then re read it again.. saved it as a bookmark to read it again..!!!
    n everytime i read.. only 1 word comes to my mind.. AMAZING..!!!
    too good n keep up the good writing...!!!
    P.S : reading ur blog... i ve started to blog again.. actually my blog was junk.. now reworking on it n posting everythin back :)
    thank u..!!!

  25. @superrrnickkk: *goes back to check if she's gotten the number of letters correct* Thank you so much!! I really don't know what to say. :) If I have inspired at least one person to start writing, then my writing is worth the while. Thanks again. :)
    P.S: My bluetooth is named Tracer Bullet. :p
    C&H is sheer genius, that's what it is. Certain strips don't even have a dialogue, but still manages to be brilliant. Phew...

  26. I know reading a comic has a different charm altogether, but what you can do is download the entire C&H from the net :) Its the second best option :)
    Thank God Anu Club was discontinued, it was absolutely rubbish :P

  27. Hirl, now you can even pen down poems ;) Truly poignant :)

  28. @Serendipity: This wasn't written by me re. Read again carefully. :)


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