Blind Pew :: J. L. Borges

Far from the sea and from fine war,
Which love hauled with him now that they were lost,
The blind old buccaneer was trudging
The cloddy roads of the English countryside.

Barked at by the farmhouse curs,
The butt of all the village lads,
In sickly and broken sleep he stirred
The black dust in the wayside ditches.

He knew that golden beaches far away
Kept hidden for him his own treasure,
So cursing fate’s not worth the breath;

You too on golden beaches far away
Keep for yourself an incorruptible treasure:
Hazy, many-peopled death.

One thought on “Blind Pew :: J. L. Borges

  1. “la vasta y vaga y populosa muerte”
    “vast, vague, many-peopled death” might have made a better translation? It keeps the repetition of the original with vasta – vaga

    I have seen a newer (I think) version of the poem, where “populosa” is replaced with “necesaria”, which in this context does not mean “necessary” but rather “certain, sure, unavoidable”.

    By the way, what’s with “So cursing fate’s not worth the breath”? the original in Spanish says “and this relieved his bad fortune”. I guess it is for the rhyme of breath and death, but it is sad that the original meaning is lost, especially because that line summarizes the purpose of the poem.

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